Outburst of shooting stars up to 200 meteors per hour - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Outburst of shooting stars up to 200 meteors per hour

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -

The heavens will be bursting with shooting stars this week.
    
Thursday night into early Friday, the annual Perseid meteor shower is expected to peak with double the normal number of meteors. Scientists call this an outburst, and they say it could reach up to 200 meteors per hour.
    
Prime viewing should be in the pre-dawn hours of Friday, after the moon sets. Scientists hope to capture the action with a new instrument at the International Space Station.
    
The last Perseids outburst was in 2009. Thanks to a gravity nudge from Jupiter, debris from comet Swift-Tuttle could stray closer to Earth again. These scattered specks of dust - a trail in the comet's wake - are what flash as they burn up in the atmosphere.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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