2014 Orionid meteor shower
In 2014, the shower is expected to peak between October 20 - 21. An almost new Moon will make it easy to view the shower for both Northern and Southern Hemisphere observers.
The Orionid meteor shower is one of the two meteor showers associated with the Comet Halley. It is called Orionids because the meteors seem to emerge or radiate from the constellation Orion.
Orionids tend to be active every year in the month of October, usually peaking around October 20. At its peak, people can view about 20 meteors an hour.
The Eta Aquarids in May is the second meteor shower created by the debris left by Comet Halley. Halley takes around 76 years to make a complete revolution around the Sun. The next time, it will be visisble from Earth will be in 2061.
The Draconids also occur in October. They usually peak around October 7 and October 8.
Where to view the Orionids
The Orionids can be seen by viewers from both hemispheres.
While it is not necessary to look in a particular direction to enjoy a meteor shower – just lay down on the ground and look directly above and you are bound to see some meteors – astronomers suggest that observers in the Northern Hemisphere look towards the southeastern sky, while those in the Southern Hemisphere look at the northeastern sky.
When to view the Orionids
The best time to view the Orionids is just after midnight and right before dusk.
Location in the skyThe Orionid meteor shower is not visible at this time of year. The best date is around Oct 20, 2014, table below is for that date:
|Orionid meteor shower for New York (Night between Oct 20 and Oct 21)|
|Mon 11:00 PM||75°||6.0°|
|Tue 1:00 AM||94°||28.5°|
|Tue 2:00 AM||106°||39.7°|
|Tue 3:00 AM||120°||50.2°|
|Tue 4:00 AM||140°||59.0°|
|Tue 5:00 AM||169°||63.9°|
|Tue 6:00 AM||202°||62.9°|
Set your location
How to view the Orionids
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 Orionids:
- 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.
In this Article
All about meteor showers
- A handy guide to meteor showers
- May 2014: Camelopardalids
- October 2014: Draconids
- October 2014: Orionids
- November 2014: Leonids
- December 2014: Geminids
- December 2014: Ursids
- January 2015: Quadrantids
- April 2015: Lyrids
- May 2015: Eta Aquarids
- August 2015: Perseids