What to Know About the Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower

Credit Pixabay  MANILA BULLETIN

Each year, as Earth crosses the orbital path of Halley's Comet, stargazers are treated to a fantastic meteor shower known as the Eta Aquarid.

An NBC4 viewer sent us dashcam video from the eastbound 10 Freeway near Mid-City/downtown Los Angeles.

The peak hourly rate for meteors in the Aquarid shower is 60 on May 5 and May 6.

The Eta Aquarid shower occurs every year roughly late April to mid-May, and offers stunning views of "shooting stars" in the night sky.

The Eta Aquarids have a most interesting lineage. The meteors stem from Eta Aquarri, one of the brightest stars in the constellation Aquarius. All the meteors Tupman sighted appeared to emanate from the constellation of Aquarius.

In a post on its website, Nasa said: 'The constellation of Aquarius - home to the radiant of the Eta Aquarids - is higher up in the sky in the Southern Hemisphere than it is in the Northern Hemisphere.


Tomorrow night, the moon - which can wash out meteors with its bright light - will have already set by the time the meteor shower is on the horizon. The longer nights in the Southern Hemisphere allows the radiant to rise higher in their sky.

"But it's not. The reason it's not is that sunrise comes later to the Southern Hemisphere (where it's autumn in May) and earlier to the Northern Hemisphere (where it's spring in May)". Tonight there will be up to 50 meteors going by in an hour.

For most, perhaps the best hope for seeing the Eta Aquarids is if you chanced to catch a glimpse of a meteor as it grazed our atmosphere horizontally - much the same way as a flat rock can be made to skim across the top of a lake or pond.

Meteor Shower Quiz: How Well Do You Know "Shooting Stars"?

They might originate in that part of the sky, but they'll fly every which way, which means it really doesn't matter where you're looking, as long as you're somewhere away from the lights of the city.

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