The annual Perseid Meteor Shower peaks this week, and according to NASA scientists, the show may be extra dazzling.
The Perseids occur each year as Earth passes through debris associated with the Comet Swift-Tuttle. As that debris enters Earth's atmosphere it burns up. These meteors, or "shooting stars" as they're commonly called, look like streaks of light in the night sky.
The meteor shower this year peaks on Thursday night and early on Friday morning before dawn. The view will be best after the moon sets around 1 a.m. on Friday, leaving us with dark skies until the sunrises around 5 a.m.
Keep in mind the actual meteor shower takes place over the course of weeks, so really any time now you may spot a rogue meteor or two. It's just during the peak of the show where your odds of seeing one are highest.
The typical Perseids shower typically offer 50-80 meteors per hour, but this year NASA scientists say we may experience an "outburst" of extra activity. We last saw that in 2009. During outburst years the rate can be as high as 150-200 meteors per hour.
Of course you'll only see that many in a very dark area away from city lights.
The weather is always a wildcard too. Right now it looks like we'll see partly cloudy skies during the peak of the show in New England, meaning we should be able to take part in the viewing.