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Eta Aquarid Meteor Shower in 2018

The Eta Aquarids will peak on May 6, 2018. The best time to see the shower, which is visible from most of the world, is in the early morning, just before dawn.

Where Can I See the Eta Aquarids?

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


Peak dates:

Beta The animation shows the position of the radiant (the red circle) in the night sky above Washington DC ...Change location

All times shown are local times. Use the Select night drop-down menu above the animation to select other dates. Click on the Peak dates link above the animation to select the night when the meteor shower peaks. Press the play button (►) to see how the radiant will move across the sky through the night with respect to your position on the ground. Alternatively, you can rotate the sky manually by using your mouse or touchpad. Clicking on the red arrow will take you back to the radiant.

During the nights of meteor shower activity, the animation automatically shows the real-time position of the radiant. Clicking the LIVE button, changing dates, or manually rotating the sky will take you out of the live mode.

The animation is representative; it does not show the exact numbers of meteors visible at any given time. You could see more or fewer shooting stars depending on the level of meteor shower activity.

When Can I See the Eta Aquarids

Eta Aquarid meteor shower image
The shooting stars in the Eta Aquarids are debris from Halley's comet.
The shooting stars in the Eta Aquarids are debris from Halley's comet.
©iStockphoto.com/davidhoffmannphotography

Also sometimes spelled as Eta Aquariid, the meteor shower is usually active between April 19 and May 28 every year. In 2018, it will peak on May 6.

Dust From Halley's Comet

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

Comet Halley takes around 76 years to make a complete revolution around the Sun. The next time it will be visible from Earth is in 2061.

The table below shows the exact direction of the Eta Aquarids from your location.

Location in the Sky Tonight

A slight chance to see η-Aquariids; the table below is updated daily and shows the position for the coming night.

η-Aquariids meteor shower for Washington DC (Night between April 19 and April 20)
TimeAzimuth/DirectionAltitude
Fri 4:00 am107°East-southeast9.4°
Fri 5:00 am117°East-southeast20.2°

Direction to see the η-Aquariids in the sky:

Note that this is not the prime period to watch the η-Aquariids, so there may be few or no meteors visible this night. Set your location

How to Watch Meteor Showers

  • Check the weather: Meteors, or shooting stars, are easy to spot; all you need is clear skies and a pair of eyes.
  • Get out of town: Find a place as far away as possible from artificial lights.
  • Prepare to wait: Bring something to sit or lie down on. Stargazing is a waiting game, so get comfortable.

Topics: Astronomy, Meteors, Comets, May

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Meteor Showers Library

  1. January: Quadrantids
  2. April: Lyrids
  3. May: Eta Aquarids
  4. August: Perseids
  5. October: Draconids
  6. October: Orionids
  7. November: Leonids
  8. December: Geminids
  9. December: Ursids

What Is a Meteor Shower?


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