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The meteor shower pages provide information about when, where, and how to look for meteor showers. The Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map shows the position of the shower radiant in the night sky and gives the best dates and times to view shooting stars.

Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map

How do I use the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map on my desktop?

The Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map simulates the position of the radiant of a meteor shower in the night sky. The radiant in the sky is marked by a circle, which changes color according to the prediction of the visibility meter. To find out what each color means, look in the box on the top left.

Please note the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map 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.

  • The meteor shower sky map defaults to the date of the peak night only if the meteor shower is not active. If it is active, it defaults to the upcoming or current night. Use the Select night drop-down menu above the map to select other dates. All times shown are local times for your chosen location.
  • Click on the Peak dates link above the sky map to select the night when the meteor shower peaks.
  • Press the play button to see the radiant move across the sky through the night with respect to your position on the ground. Alternatively, you can rotate the sky manually or move the red button on the bar on the bottom by using your mouse or touchpad.
  • If the radiant is not visible on the screen, click on the red arrow to bring it back to your view. If the radiant is below the horizon, the red arrow will point downwards.
  • The Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map automatically shows the real-time position of the radiant only during nights of meteor shower activity. During this time, the LIVE button on the bottom left will be available and switched on.
  • Clicking the LIVE button, changing dates, or manually rotating the sky will take you out of the LIVE mode.
  • Press the to go to full-screen mode and to hide constellations.

How do I use the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map on my mobile device?

You can view the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map on a device by opening up a meteor shower page on your preferred browser. Please keep in mind not all devices or browsers support the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map.

  • On some mobile devices, touching the sky map will take you to full screen mode. Please keep in mind that swiping right or pressing the back button on Apple devices will not take you back to the page. To go back to read more about the meteor shower click on the exit full screen button on the bottom right.

  • The Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map defaults to the date of the peak night only if the meteor shower is not active. If it is active, it defaults to the current or upcoming night. To change the date, go back to the main page by clicking on the full screen exit button on the bottom right.
  • Use the Select night drop-down menu above the sky map to select other dates. Click on the Peak dates link to select the night when the meteor shower peaks. All times shown are local times.
  • Press the play button to see the radiant move across the sky through the night with respect to your position on the ground. Alternatively, you can rotate the sky manually by dragging your finger across the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map.
  • If the radiant is not visible on the screen, clicking on the red arrow to bring it back to your view. If the radiant is below the horizon, the red arrow will point downwards.
  • The real-time position of the radiant is only shown during nights of meteor shower activity. During this time, the LIVE button will be available and switched on.
  • Clicking the LIVE button, changing dates, or manually rotating the sky will take you out of the LIVE mode.
  • Press to hide constellations.
  • On many mobile devices, the bar on the bottom may show a 360-degree mode. Clicking it will allow you to point your device to the sky and view the direction of stars, constellations, planets, and the Moon on your screen with respect to your orientation for the chosen date. To choose time, touch on the bar and move the red dot to get to your desired time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is a radiant?

Meteors from a meteor shower all move on a parallel path, and at the same velocity, so they seem to originate from a single spot in the sky to observers on Earth. This point is known as the radiant. By convention, meteor showers are named after the constellation the radiant lies in or is close to.

What does the radiant altitude and direction mean?

Radiant altitude is the height of the radiant from the horizon. Because of the way distance is measured in the sky, the altitude is provided in terms of degrees.

The radiant direction points to the direction of the radiant in the sky based on true north.

The radiant altitude and direction can help you locate the meteor shower radiant in the night sky.

What is the visibility conditions meter, and where can I find it?

The meteor shower visibility conditions meter is the result of a complex algorithm that takes into account a variety of astronomical factors to predict the best time to view the meteor shower. These factors include Moon phase, twilight, time of sunrise and sunset, radiant altitude, and distance of the radiant from the Moon.

Please note the visibility conditions meter does not take into account the weather, the predicted cloud cover, or the number of meteors expected at any point.

The visibility condition for any point in time during a night can be viewed in the box on the top left side of the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map. To see how it changes over time, move the mouse, or drag your finger if you are on a mobile device, over the bar on the bottom.

Why isn't the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map showing?

Unfortunately, some older devices/browsers do not support the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map. If you are on a mobile device, please use the desktop version to view the map. If you are on a desktop, please update your browser or use another browser.

I am on a mobile device. Why isn't the 360-degree mode showing?

Unfortunately, some older mobile devices do not support the 360-degree mode. If you have a newer device with updated software and cannot view the compass option, or if the sky map is showing you the wrong directions, please follow these steps:

  • Calibrate your device's built-in compass by using the method provided by the manual. Sometimes stepping out of a building and walking around with your device pointed toward the sky can help.
  • Ensure that your phone compass is showing the correct direction by opening a navigation app and seeing if it shows the right direction for a known location. If not, calibrate your phone's compass by following the steps provided by your manual.
  • If the compass is calibrated and the sky map still doesn't work or shows the wrong direction, try using a different browser.

How can I change my location?

Click on the city/location name on the banner above the Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map and enter your city in the popup box. Alternatively, you can click on the Change location link below the map or click on the city name in the Quick Facts list.

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