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The Post  
Delta Aquarid Meteor Shower tonight in Philadelphia skies
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 07/29/12 3:28 am | updated: 07/29/12 3:28 am
Overnight tonight, Saturday July 28 to early morning Sunday July 29th, will be the zenith of the annual Delta Aquarid meteor shower. This shower is not expected to be overwhelmingly prolific because the waxing gibbous moon will be bright in the sky drowning out most of the duller meteors. The full moon is only a few days away on August 2nd.

The moon will be setting after midnight, so you can still head out and try and catch a few. The peak meteor rate for this particular shower is expected to be about 16 per hour.

Just like most annual meteor showers, the Delta Aquarids occur when the Earth's solar orbit crosses through the debris path left by comets on their way around the sun. Scientists believe this path was left by comet 96P/Machholz, discovered in 1986 by an amateur astronomer named Dan Machholz, although they aren't quite sure.

If the Delta Aquarids don't give enough sparkle, there are only have 2 weeks to wait for one of the best meteor showers of the year. The Perseids occur on August 11 with a rate of 90 meteors an hour.

Tonight the thunderstorms should move out of Philadelphia and clear the skies. The focal point is the constellation Aquarius in the southeast sky, but meteors could come from any direction.

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