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Perseid meteors

(Photo © Fort Photo) Photographer Michael Menfee created this composite image — made from 324 shots of 25 seconds each — in August 2012, near Copperton, Wyo. Another image was taken at a longer shutter speed, he writes, for foreground lighting from the moonlight. “When I saw how clearly the Milky Way was rendering to the west, I couldn't resist pointing one camera away from the meteor shower radiant to test my luck. With over 27 meteors, my luck was very good!” he writes.

Perseid meteor shower lights up the sky

Starting on Monday, Aug. 12, Perseid meteors will streak across the summer sky for a couple of nights, offering casual stargazers and serious nighttime photographers a chance to capture a glimpse of the annual meteor shower.

The Perseids appear when the Earth passes through debris left by the Swift-Tuttle comet. The comet’s dust smashes into our planet’s atmosphere at 132,000 mph, says NASA, flecking the sky with as many as 100 meteors an hour. The prime viewing time will occur between 10:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. local time.

The Perseids — named for the constellation Perseus, from which the meteors seem to emerge — also offer space geeks another bonus: a “fireball” meteor that NASA says can be as bright as Venus. Data collected and studied this year by the space agency says the Perseids produce more “fireball” meteors than any other shower.

If you’re photographing the Perseids, Yahoo News and Flickr are interested in showcasing your work. Upload your photos to Flickr and submit them to Yahoo News’ Your Photos group. We’ll select some of the best for a future slideshow. — Tim Skillern

In this gallery, we’ve showcased some of the best Flickr photography of the Perseids from past showers.

Photos are by European Southern Observatory, Mulling it Over, betwo23, pedrog78, Greg Francke, the real Kam75, tobyharriman, C. Fredrickson Photography, hiro, Ian Alexander Norman, Isaac Baquero Pérez, ∙tlc∙, Thunderbolt_TW, David Kingham, Dave Renwald and Michael Menefee.