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2015 Eta Aquarids meteor shower

The Eta Aquarids meteor shower will peak on May 5-6 in 2015. A waning gibbous Moon (the Moon's phase after a full Moon) will make it hard for observers to see the shower. Astronomers suggest watching the shower before dawn.

Illustration image
Eta Aquarids peak in early May
Eta Aquarids is one of the two meteor showers associated with Halley's comet.
©iStockphoto.com/ Maltaguy1

The Eta Aquarids meteor shower are usually active between April 19 and May 28 every year. It tends to peak around May 6 or May 7.

The Eta Aquarids seem to radiate from the direction of the constellation Aquarius in the sky. The shower is named after the brightest star of the constellation, Eta Aquarii.

The Eta Aquarids is one of the two meteor showers associated with Halley’s Comet. The Earth passes for a second time through Halley's path around the Sun in October. This creates the Orionid meteor shower, which peaks around October 20.

Where to view the Eta Aquarids

Observers anywhere in the world can view the Eta Aquarids meteor shower.

When to view the Eta Aquarids

The best time to view the Eta Aquarids is in the early mornings, right before dawn.

Location in the sky

The Eta Aquarids meteor shower is not visible at this time of year. The best date is around May 5, 2015, table below is for that date:
Eta Aquarids meteor shower for New York (Night between May 5 and May 6)
TimeAzimuth/
Direction
Altitude
Wed 3:00 AM97°East7.1°
Wed 4:00 AM108°East-southeast18.1°
Wed 5:00 AM120°East-southeast28.6°
Note: times are for May 5, 2015.
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How to view the Eta Aquarids

There isn’t a lot of skill involved in watching a meteor shower. Here are some tips on how to maximize your time looking for the Eta Aquarids:

  • Get out of the city to a place where city and artificial lights do not impede your viewing
  • If you are out viewing the shower during its peak, you will not need any special equipment. You should be able to see the shower with your naked eyes.
  • Carry a blanket or a comfortable chair with you - viewing meteors, just like any other kind of star gazing is a waiting game, and you need to be comfortable. Plus, you may not want to leave until you can’t see the majestic celestial fireworks anymore.
  • Check the weather and moonrise and moonset timings for your location before you leave, and plan your viewing around it.

Topics: Astronomy, Meteors, Moon, May

In this Article

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All about meteor showers

  1. A handy guide to meteor showers
  2. October 2014: Orionids
  3. November 2014: Leonids
  4. December 2014: Geminids
  5. December 2014: Ursids
  6. January 2015: Quadrantids
  7. April 2015: Lyrids
  8. May 2015: Eta Aquarids
  9. August 2015: Perseids
  10. October 2015: Draconids

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