Every year in August, the Earth passes through the debris trail from the comet Swift-Tuttle, resulting in thousands of the tiny bits of fluff burning up in our atmosphere. This causes the annual Perseid meteor shower, and on August 13, 2011, at 7:17 p.m. UT, astronaut Ron Garan took this incredible picture of a Perseid meteor burning up in the atmosphere below him
. I wonder if he was nervous seeing those shooting stars as he sat in the space station, looking down. He needn't have been; according to my math
the odds are low that the ISS will get hit by a Perseid even if it circled the Earth for millennia. Space is big, and even at 100 meters in diameter, the space station is a tiny target in comparison.