Bloody Moon stuffs the Perseids
Annual meteor shower set to be a wash-out
Tonight is the night for the best view of the Perseids – the annual meteor shower caused by the debris trail of comet Swift-Tuttle.
Or rather it would be if it weren't for the bloody Moon, which has timed its near-fullness to perfection to "interfere significantly" with the chances of copping a decent view of the lightshow.
Of course, the state of the Moon is academic for those readers in Blighty, since the sky looks likely to be entirely obscured by the traditional cloud, augmented by smoke from still-smouldering inner cities. ®
Luckily the moon doesn't affect radio!
Luckily the moon doesn't affect radio reflections from meteors (strictly speaking the plasma trail from meteors) so if you cannot see much of the night sky you still might take a 'listen' for Perseids...
If you have an FM radio and an outside aerial facing north east through to south east and tune to a quiet part at the bottom of the band (around 87.5-88MHz) you may be able to hear "bursts" of foreign radio stations lasting from a fraction of a second up to 20-30 seconds or so...
Standard rules for astronomical spectacles
In roughly most-to-least likely order
1) It will occur during daytime
2) It won't be visible in this hemisphere/latitude
3) It'll be cloudy - as usual
4) The full moon will obscure it
5) Light pollution will render it invisible (unless you live in the wilds of Scotland/Wales, then see #3)
6) It'll be the night of your child's school play (they're in the lead role)
7) You'll be stuck underground/in a basement/in jail
8) You'll be looking in the wrong place
9) Or on the wrong night
10) You'll be struck blind just prior to the event
11) You'll forget to take your sunglasses off and miss it all
12) It coincides with Armageddon and you're too busy worrying about that.
I just saw a little guy with a helmet on his brush who said he could fix it with his Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator