Perseid Meteors – Photography

A perseid meteor captured on the 12/08/10 over Penmon lighthouse on Anglesey, N.Wales. 20 seconds @ f2.8 iso 1600 on a Canon 5D MkII and Canon 24mm f1.4L MkII lens

This was a test on 07/08/10 shooting the early August 2010 Perseid meteorites with a Canon 7D and 10-22mm lens iso 1600 f3.5. 30 second exposures on continuous drive with NR functions turned off to maximise the camera frame rate.

The composite image was produced in Startrails.exe with dark frames used to reduce the noise.

Personally I will be reducing the exposure to lower the star count in the final images so that the meteor trails have less competition.

The sequence was from 2330-0030 on the 7th of August looking due North and there was still some ambient light around, I think the early hours of the morning will be best IF the weather is ok.

The peak activity of the Perseid meteorite shower is due in the early hours of August 12/13 2010 and with a new moon the viewing conditions should be ideal if the clouds stay away.

As the evening begins, facing east/northeast will be best for most northern hemisphere observers, and follow Perseus to the north as it rises. Unfortunately, southern hemisphere observers aren’t likely to see any of this activity – but it never hurts to keep watching the northern horizon if you’re out.

The very best views will be had when the Perseus constellation is at its highest – after local midnight through local dawn. Don’t wait until the peak date to start photographing the event as perseid meteorite activity is already underway at 15 to 20 per hour. The weather maybe awful on the 13th and the meteor rate will increase as it nears the night of August 12/13th when up to 75 meteors per hour may grace the starry skies. The next time the moon is in a favorable position is in 3 years time so grab every chance to witness this beautiful spectacle.

In an hour on the 7th I saw 6+ trails with one having a very long tail but as usual I only caught one small trail in the composite image which is hardly visible at this resolution lol.

It’s worth noting that the largest trails I saw were directly overhead rather than on a more flatter angle towards the NE horizon.

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