Queen of the Night: Classy Cassiopeia Constellation Reigns Over Meteor (Photo)

Cassiopeia During Perseid Meteor Shower 2012
Astrophtographer Vega Star Carpentier took this stunning photo on Aug. 11, 2012 in Épernay, Champagne-Ardenne, FR, using a Canon EOS 1000D. (Image credit: VegaStar Carpentier)

A Perseid meteor blazes through the night sky near the constellation Cassiopeia, a celestial queen, in this eye-popping view.

Astrophotographer VegaStar Carpentier took this stunning photo on Aug.11, 2012, in Épernay, Champagne-Ardenne, France, using a Canon EOS 1000D.

The Perseid meteor shower  has been observed by humans each summer for more than 2,000 years, It occurs when the Earth passes through debris left from the comet Swift-Tuttle. The dust and ice begin to burn when it reaches Earth’s atmosphere providing a fiery display for those who watch in late July or early August.

The constellation  Cassiopeia, named after a mythical Greek queen who boasted about her beauty, can also be seen on the right of the image. This constellation is easily recognizable due to its “W” shape and bright, glimmering stars.

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Contributing Writer and Producer

Nina Sen is a freelance writer and producer who covered night sky photography and astronomy for Space.com. She began writing and producing content for Space.com in 2011 with a focus on story and image production, as well as amazing space photos captured by NASA telescopes and other missions. Her work also includes coverage of amazing images by astrophotographers that showcase the night sky's beauty.