<p>The annual <a id="g5dm" title="Perseid meteor shower" href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/08/090812-perseids-perseid-meteor-shower.html">Perseid meteor shower</a> reached its peak mid-August, with a moonless sky providing near-perfect observing conditions. (See <a href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/08/100811-science-space-stargazing-meteor-showers-perseids/">pictures of Perseids past</a>.)</p><p>The Perseids appear like clockwork each year when Earth passes through a giant cloud of debris left in the wake of comet Swift-Tuttle. Hitting the atmosphere at speeds of almost 100,000 miles (160,000 kilometers) an hour, the meteors burn up and produce streaks of light that each last just a fraction of a second.</p><p><strong><a id="c3if" title="Full story >>" href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/08/100811-science-space-stargazing-meteor-showers-perseids"><em>Full story: "Meteor Shower Peaks Tonight—How to See Perseids"</em><br></a></strong></p>

10. Peak of the Perseids

The annual Perseid meteor shower reached its peak mid-August, with a moonless sky providing near-perfect observing conditions. (See pictures of Perseids past.)

The Perseids appear like clockwork each year when Earth passes through a giant cloud of debris left in the wake of comet Swift-Tuttle. Hitting the atmosphere at speeds of almost 100,000 miles (160,000 kilometers) an hour, the meteors burn up and produce streaks of light that each last just a fraction of a second.

Full story: "Meteor Shower Peaks Tonight—How to See Perseids"

Photograph by Wally Pacholka, TWAN

Best Space Discoveries of 2010: Nat Geo News's Most Popular

Bright meteors and mind-bending theories about the universe were among National Geographic News's most viewed space stories of 2010.

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