August 9–10 A Meteor Shower, a Meteorite, and More

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Every August planet Earth cuts through the so-called “river of rubble” left behind along the orbit of Comet Swift-Tuttle—which last visited the inner solar system in 1992—treating us to one of the flashiest meteor showers of the year, the Perseids.

Persids NASA

Perseids Meteor Shower

Image Credit: NASA/Katsuhiro Mouri & Shuji Kobayashi (Nagoya City Science Museum/Planetarium)

This year’s peak meteor activity happens on August 12 and 13, when dark-sky observers may be able to count up to 100 Perseids per hour! The sight may be slightly upstaged, however, by the August 10 full Moon. Before you try your shot at catching a glimpse of the show, learn about meteors, meteorites, and asteroids at the Museum’s Arthur Rose Hall of Meteorites. 

Cape York Meteorite (Ahnighito)

The Cape York Meteorite is so heavy that supports from the largest of the three pieces go straight down to the bedrock beneath the Museum. The massive meteorite comes from the center of a small asteroid that broke apart.

When you touch the 4.5-billion-year-old Cape York Meteorite, you are touching an object that is nearly as old as the Sun. Discovered in 1894 in Greenland, this iron meteorite slammed into Earth some 10,000 years ago.

Then head to the Rose Center for Earth and Space where you can venture far beyond our solar system into deep space in the Hayden Planetarium Space Show, Dark Universe. Learn about the dark matter and dark energy that together may make up 95 percent of the universe’s total energy and mass. 

Don't forget! The Power of Poison exhibition closes this Sunday, August 10, 2014 

Tags: Weekends