Wonderful meteor shower tonight across the Texas Panhandle

Tom Hinde

West Texas night skies will feature a rare celestial show tonight if the weather cooperates. The annual Perseid meteor shower will light up the night sky. The Earth will pass through the tail of the comet Swift-Tuttle, which has an orbital period of 133 years, between July 24 and Aug. 24.

The peak of the meteor shower is tonight from 11:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. as the Earth passes through the heart of the comet's tail. "It happens every year at this time. However, this is supposed to be a good one," said Arthur Schneider, professor emeritus at Amarillo College. "Rather than one meteor a minute, it might be 20 a minute," Schneider said. NASA reported it might reach as many as 200 per hour.

Experts suggest sitting under a dark sky and facing northeast. For more information, please visit www.space.com or www.nasa.gov.