Philadelphia astronomer to host online play-by-play of Perseid meteor shower

Perseid meteor shower
Photo credit Jason Weingart/Barcroft Media via Getty Images
PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A Philadelphia astronomer is hosting a virtual event to help stargazers follow along with the Perseid meteor shower as it lights up the sky Tuesday night.

Derrick Pitts, chief astronomer at The Franklin Institute, will lead the Facebook Live event via Visit PA’s page. The one-hour event starts at 9 p.m.

“The Perseid is one of the strongest meteor showers of the year,” Pitts said, “and because it comes in August, it’s a perfect time for people to be out underneath the night sky.”

It’s also the perfect time to grab your phone or tablet, step outside, and look up as he offers a play-by-play of above.

“Providing information about what’s a good thing to see in their region of the state, and also providing information about resources in that particular region for amateur observers,” he added, like observatories nearby, or how to get involved with a local astronomy club.

Pitts anticipates people from across the state to join the livestream. And city dwellers, fear not: City light pollution won’t hinder your experience. 

“There’s still plenty for you to see,” Pitts said. “Over in the southeastern portion of the sky tonight are two bright objects. And, those are the largest planets of our solar system — Jupiter and Saturn.”