Starry Night 2019 is from Friday, August 2 to Sunday, August 4. Three nights to enjoy the shooting stars of the Perseids in isolation or from one of the many observation sites throughout France.
This weekend, the sky is waiting for you for the Night of Stars 2019. A 29th edition which, unlike last year, will not allow the Perseids to be observed with a Mars planet at its closest point to Earth. Nevertheless, the show will still be as enjoyable as ever for astronomy enthusiasts, with an intensity that will gradually increase over the next few days.
Night of the stars 2019: date, times and how to observe them?
This weekend, the Perseids are doing their show, but it is already possible to observe them since July 17. In August, shooting stars gradually increase in intensity as the Earth’s atmosphere approaches the densest points of the dust debris of Comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. They travel very fast, at a speed of 58 km/s, or about 210,000 km/h.
On Friday 2, Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 August, the French Astronomy Association organizes the Night of Stars 2019. ” This year we won’t be able to see Mars like last year. But there are still two planets that will be at the rendezvous: Jupiter and Saturn ,” explains Clément Plantureux, co-organizer of the Night of Stars 2019, in an interview with RTL. The Perseids will remain observable until August 25th with a peak of activity planned for the weekend of August 11th to 12th.
Where and how best to observe the starry sky?
Everywhere in France, close to your home or from your holiday resort, you will be able to observe points of light in the atmosphere, with the naked eye, using glasses or a telescope to make the most of the show, especially for those who wish to observe Saturn surrounded by its magnificent rings, but also Jupiter with its four clearly visible moons. They will already be observable at around 21:30.
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As usual, it is best to stay away from big cities and especially from places that are too bright to observe the stars in the best conditions. Those who are located in the mountains or in the open country are the best off. And then there are the more than ,400 sites spread throughout France by the AFA as part of the Night of Stars 2019. You will find here the interactive map of the association to choose a site near you to enjoy observations with the naked eye, binoculars, or using the telescopes available for free on these sites.