Meteor shower due to hit night skies

Last updated at 11:02
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Carole Mundell, Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy at Liverpool John Moores University explains all about the Perseids meteor shower

Around this time every year the skies at night light up with shooting stars, it is known as the Perseid meteor shower.

Experts say it is one of the most active meteor showers there is, and if the skies are clear there's a good chance you'll catch a glimpse of it.

What are Perseids?

Around August-time each year Earth passes through a patch of space debris that has been left behind by a comet.

Some of the debris is tiny - as small as a grain of sand - but others can be huge.

The balls of debris pass through the Earth's atmosphere at whopping speeds of up to 140,000 miles an hour - this causes them to burn up creating the bright light we see from down here.

At certain points of the night it can be possible to spot up to 100 shooting stars in a single hour!

How to spot them

If it is a clear night where you are, it should be pretty easy to spot them - but you'll have to stay up late (if you're allowed) because they are the brightest around midnight.

You don't need a telescope or binoculars to see them, but if you have either of these you might catch a closer look.

Experts say the Perseids could be easier to spot this year because the moon will set early, making the skies much darker.