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Meteor Showers for 2010

 

Picture of a meteor (Leonid) courtesy of Navicore and Wikipedia

Table of meteor showers for 2010

Meteor showers can be a bit hit or miss and in some years a regular shower can be fantastic and other years it can be quite slow. There are actually quite a few more legitimate showers than I have but for the most part they are irregular and slow. These are the yearly best and I have highlighted the absolute best ones in blue for easy recognition. Make note of the red column Peak. This is typically the best day or best couple of days to view the meteor shower.

Meteor showers can sometimes be a bit unexpected in their performance so if there is currently a weak shower going on for you or coming up for you it might be worth spending some time taking a look and watching for it. They can get to be pretty nice, even the weak ones.

Quick overview of some of the more dramatic meteor showers:

  • January: The Quadrantids: Up to 120 Per hour and this shower can be seen as originating from the constellation Bootes. See a chart of the constellation Bootes here
  • May: Eta Aquarids: up to 60 per hour; This meteor shower is associated with Halley's Comet and this shower can be seen originating from the constellation Aquarius. See a chart of Aquarius and the Eta Aquarids here
  • June: Arietids: This is a fairly strong meteor shower that can be up to 60 an hour but it is spread out over a period of time rougly from May 22 to July 2. The peak is usually around June 7th. So, a few days before and after June 7 is typically the best time to view this meteor shower. You can see a star chart of Aries and the Arietids here
  • July: The south Delta Aquarids. This meteor shower is spread out over a full month from around July 18 to August 19 and it usually peaks around July 28 & 29 with about 20 shooting stars per hour. You can see a star chart of aquarius here.
  • August: The Perseids Meteor shower. This is a pretty good meteor shower that can produce up to 60 shooting stars per hour. It lasts about a month from July 23 to August 22 and it peaks around August 12 and 13. You can see a star chart of Perseus here
  • October: The Orionids: Oct 17-25 This is a very interesting meteor shower. It typically has a medium rate of around 20 shooting stars per hour but it is known for producing meteors that are yellow and green which makes it quite unique and it often produces large meteors described as fireballs. It can be an erratic meteor shower that is spread out over a period of time but usually the best is from Oct 17-25 with a peak around Oct 21 and 22. You can see a star chart of Orion here.
  • December: The Geminids. This is one of the most reliable meteor showers of the year. They typically come in at 120 shooting stars per hour and they range in color from white to yellow, blue, green and red! The time of the Geminids ranges from December 7 to 17 and they peak on December 13 and 14. I have a star chart of Gemini here.

 

Name Duration Peak Hourly rate Strength
Quadrantids Jan 2 - Jan 4 Jan 3 120 Strong
Delta Cancrids Jan 1 - Jan 31 Jan 17 4 Medium
Alpha Centaurids Jan 28 - Feb 21 Feb 7 6 Medium
February Leonids Feb 1 - Feb 28 several 5 Medium
Delta Leonids Feb 15 - Mar 10 Feb 24 2 Medium
Gamma Normids Feb 25 - Mar 22 Mar 13 8 Medium
Virginids Mar 1 - Apr 15 several 5 Medium
Librids Apr 15 - Apr 30 several 5 Medium
Lyrids Apr 21 - Apr 22 Apr 22 15 Strong
Eta Aquarids May 5 - May 6 May 6 60 Strong
Alpha Scorpiids May 1 - May 31 May 16 5 Medium
Arietids May 22 - Jul 2 Jun 7 54 Strong
Sagittarids Jun 1 - Jul 15 Jun 19 5 Medium
July Pegasids Jul 7 - Jul 13 Jul 10 3 Medium
Piscis Austrinids Jul 15 - Aug 10 Jul 28 5 Medium
South Delta Aquarids Jul 18 - Aug 19 Jul 28 20 Strong
Alpha Capricornids Jul 3 - Aug 15 Jul 30 4 Medium
South Iota Aquarids Jul 25 - Aug 15 Aug 4 2 Medium
North Delta Aquarids Jul 15 - Aug 25 Aug 8 4 Medium
Perseids Jul 17 - Aug 24 Aug 12 90 Strong
Kappa Cygnids Aug 3 - Aug 25 Aug 17 3 Medium
North Iota Aquarids Aug 11 - Aug 31 Aug 20 3 Medium
Alpha Aurigids Aug 25 - Sep 8 Sep 1 7 Medium
September Perseids Sep 5 - Oct 10 Sep 8 6 Medium
Piscids Sep 1 - Sep 30 Sep 20 3 Medium
October Arietids Oct 1 - Oct 31 Oct 8 5 Medium
Delta Aurigids Sep 22 - Oct 23 Oct 10 6 Medium
Epsilon Geminids Oct 14 - Oct 27 Oct 18 2 Medium
Orionids Oct 17 - Oct 25 Oct 21 20 Strong
Southern Taurids Nov 1 - Nov 25 Nov 5 5 Medium
Northern Taurids Nov 1 - Nov 25 Nov 12 5 Medium
Chi Orionids Nov 25 - Dec 31 Dec 2 3 Medium
Monocerotids Nov 27 - Dec 17 Dec 9 3 Medium
Sigma Hydrids Dec 3 - Dec 15 Dec 12 2 Medium
Puppid-velids Dec 2 - Dec 16 Dec 12 4 Medium
Geminids Dec 7 - Dec 17 Dec 14 120 Strong
Coma Berenicids Dec 12 - Jan 23 Dec 20 5 Medium
Ursids Dec 17 - Dec 26 Dec 22 10 Strong
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