Updated 13 December: Just a reminder of the famous Geminids shower which is peaking from tonight, with astronomers expecting quite a spectacular show, perhaps the best of all meteor showers in 2017. Anyone who would like to watch live from home can do so thanks to STARS4ALL, which will be transmitting from the observatory from 11pm tomorrow night, the 14th. There is more information HERE and HERE on the transmission.
Updated 19 November: We’re just seeing the end of the Leonids but the best shower of the year is coming up next month. The Geminids are peaking from 13 December, and astronomers are expecting a bumper year aided by what will be a new moon: they are anticipating over 100 meteors an hour! And now there’s an opportunity to see them from the national park itself, and from a telescope, accompanied by a professional astronomer. The offer is from the tourism authorities via Volcano Teide, and you can book online HERE. It will be in Spanish, and costs €30. Everyone else, however, just needs to look up … these technically radiate from the constellation Gemini but they fill the sky.
Updated 16 November: Just a reminder of the Leonids meteor shower tomorrow and Saturday, and possibly tonight and Sunday too.
Updated 1 November: There are two meteor showers this month, first the Taurids peaking this weekend, and a fortnight later, the Leonids over the weekend of the 17- 18th. The Taurids aren’t known as a prolific shower, and in any case there’s a full moon this year so viewing is likely to be poor. The Leonids, however, are a reasonably good shower and there’ll only be a new moon, so there’s a fair to good chance of seeing a few meteors on Friday or Saturday, 17 or 18 November.
Updated 17 October: A reminder of the the Orionid meteor shower which peaks this coming weekend but visible from now since they have a very wide window either side of optimum viewing. This shower is remnants of the tail of Halley’s comet, and can sometimes put on a show. This year, too, there’s a crescent moon so conditions are pretty good for viewing, especially after midnight. The Orionids technically radiate from the constellation Orion, but they seem to appear anywhere in the sky, so just look up!
Updated 4 October: There are two meteor showers this month, and the first is this weekend with the Draconids on Saturday and Sunday, and the Orionids over the weekend of the 20th to 22nd, but with a very wide window either side. The Draconids are rarely spectacular or plentiful, and this year there will also be a full moon, so they are best viewed at dusk, but without great expectations. The Orionids, however, offer more of a show, being the remnants of the tail of Halley’s comet. This year, too, there’s a crescent moon so conditions are pretty good for viewing, especially after midnight. The Orionids technically radiate from the constellation Orion, but they seem to appear anywhere in the sky, so just look up!
Updated 7 August: The famous Perseid meteor shower will peak this weekend, though meteors will be visible from around now and for some time after the peak. Although the Perseids actually radiate from the constellation of Perseus, they are visible all over the sky, so just look up after midnight.
Updated 25 July: This Friday and Saturday the Delta Aquarids peak though it’s not a prominent shower. Best viewing will be after midnight looking south, and this peak benefits from a crescent moon so skies will be dark.
Updated 2 May: This coming weekend the Eta Aquarids meteor shower peaks but there is a chance of seeing some a week or so either side of the peak. The shower is produced by dust particles from Halley’s comet, and although it’s better viewed from the southern hemisphere, some of the brighter meteors can still be seen after midnight, and appear anywhere in the sky even though they actually radiate from Aquarius.
Updated 18 April: The Lyrids meteor shower peaks this weekend but some meteors could be glimpsed already. It’s not a spectacular shower but it can produce some 20 meteors an hour for a week either side of the peak. The shower is produced by the dust particles from the remnants of a comet, and the meteors can leave bright long tails. There’s also not much of a moon during the peak, so viewing will be optimal. Meteors actually radiate from the Lyra constellation but can be seen anywhere in the sky.
Original post 2 January: Here is the full list of this year’s meteor showers, starting tonight with the Quadrantids. These often don’t seem to produce much of a spectacle, and particularly not for those who aren’t in the far north, but there’s a chance to see something tonight, and possibly tomorrow night too, between midnight and dawn.
January 2-3 Quadrantids
April 22-23 Lyrids
May 5-6 Eta Aquarids
July 28-29 Delta Aquarids
August 12-13 Perseids
October 7-8 Draconids
October 20-22 Orionids
November 4-5 Taurids
November 17-18 Leonids
December 13-14 Geminids
December 23-24 Ursids