August Is Shooting Star Season on Mallorca

12 June 2019

Have your secret wishes ready in Mid-August. In the fabulously balmy Mallorcan summer nights, the odds to see a shooting star are higher than ever. The peak of the meteor shower during the so-called “Nights of the Perseids” is expected for August 12th when between 100 and 200 lágrimas de San Lorenzo (“Tears of San Lorenzo”) will be shed – mind you, not in a night, but per hour! The highest rate is predicted for the early morning of the 12th and can be best watched in the pre-dawn hours. Let’s all hope for a clear and cloudless sky! And may the quarter moon not be overly bright.

Milky Way and Shooting Star

The Tears of San Lorenzo #

The meteors are called Tears of San Lorenzo – lágrimas de San Lorenzo in Spanish or Les llàgrimes de Sant Llorenç in Mallorquín as the peak time of meteor showers falls around August 10th, a day appropriately chosen during the hottest time of the year to commemorate Sant Laurence, a Christian martyr whose life found a fiery end as he was burnt on the stake.

A Bit of Science #

The Perseids are active every year from July 17th to August 24thwhen the earth, on her course around sun, crosses the dust trail of comet 109/PSwift-Tuttle and thousands of shooting stars are sparked off: Dust particles racing through space at a speed of almost 60 kilometres per second burn up in a height of approx. 80 to 300 kilometres above our heads due to the resulting friction heat and cause air molecules to glow. The source of the meteor showers being in the constellation of Perseus explains the name of the phenomenon.

Nights Are Getting Longer and It’s Stargazing Time

Did you know that the UNESCO has designated Mallorca as a reserve that protects the natural darkness of our skies?

Click here to read where, when and how best to watch what’s happening overhead.
Star trail over the tower of Puig de Sa Moneda in Mallorca

Sources

12 June, 2019

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