Eta Aquarid meteor shower to peak this week

SEATTLE -- With all the buzz about the total solar eclipse this summer, some might have forgotten that a meteor shower is set to peak this week.

The annual Eta Aquarid meteor shower is usually active between April 19 and May 28. This year, it will peak around Friday or Saturday.

The best time to view the shower will be during the early morning of Saturday, just before dawn, NASA Meteoroid Environment Office lead Bill Cooke told Space.com.

Cooke said as many as 30 meteors per hour can be expected. People living in the Northern Hemisphere should look toward the southern horizon.

Experts say to best view the shower to lay on your back. Not only will it give you the most expansive view of the sky, no neck craning is necessary.

The Eta Aquarids is one of two meteor showers created by debris from Halley's Comet. Meteor showers happen when dust grains burn up in the Earth's atmosphere.

The Earth will pass through Halley's path a second time this year. This creates the Orionid meteor shower, which peaks around Oct. 20.

Halley's Comet takes around 76 years to make a complete revolution around the sun. The next time it will be visible from Earth is in 2061.