Monday, May 6, 2013
Update for the eta Aquariid Meteor Shower, 7 May 2013
Morning sky on Tuesday May 7 looking east as seen from Adelaide at 5:00 am local time in South Australia showing the eta Aquariid meteor shower radiant, the crescent Moon, Uranus and comet Lemmon. Similar views will be seen elsewhere at the equivalent local time (click to embiggen)
The eta Aquariids may be in outburst this year. On the MeteorObs list there are a reports of an outburst, with substantially greater numbers of meteors seen in the northern hemisphere than usual.
Also a new dust trail analysis suggests that some dust trails will intersect Earth on the morning of Tuesday the 7th (Australian time). So definitely go an look on the morning of the 7th.
Reports from dark sky sites in Australia on the morning of the 6th (waves to Liz Gleeson and Adam Marsh) suggest rates of around 25 per hour (over 1 every 3 minutes) this morning, despite Moonlight interference. There are reports of many bright meteors and persistent trains. And reports from suburban sites have given rates of 11 meteors per hour again with Moonlight interference. So it looks like the morning of Tuesday the 7th may be very good.
Instruction for viewing the eta Aquariids are here. Best times are around 4:00-5:30 am, but it may be worth getting up around 3-3:30 am just in case.