In 2021 the Delta Aquariids meteor shower is active from 13 July to 24 August, with the peak of the meteor shower occurring on 30 July. The Delta Aquariids begin from the constellation of Aquarius, which is close to the star Skat, the third brightest star in the constellation.
When to see the Delta Aquariid meteor shower in 2021?
The Delta Aquariids meteor shower is best seen in late July, albeit this year, its peak coincides with a bright waning gibbous moon. This implies the Moon’s bright light around this time will make it harder to recognize the meteor shower in the night skies.
However, by early August, a dim waning crescent Moon will dominate, taking into account the meteor shower to shine brighter in our view — regardless of whether it’s somewhat past peak.
The best viewing times of the Delta Aquariid meteor shower is around 2 a.m. of any time zone, and goes on for a few hours, as indicated by EarthSky.
What is the Delta Aquariid meteor shower?
With a moderate meteor shower peaking in late July, the Delta Aquariids start the summer meteor season in the northern hemisphere. Albeit best viewed from the southern hemisphere, those living at mid-latitudes in the northern hemisphere can in any case get a brief look at the meteor shower.
The name of the shower comes from the constellation in the night sky that it seems, by all accounts, to be traveling directly outward from. For the Delta Aquariids, the radiant of the shower lies inside the constellation of Aquarius close to the bright star Delta Aquarii.
Where to see the Delta Aquariid meteor shower?
The radiant of the shower lies above the southern horizon and will arrive at its highest point around 3:30 am – start your meteor watch from around 2 am to build your chances of spotting meteors. Check the weather forecast ahead of time – if the conjecture isn’t favorable, track down an alternate location to observe from or see the meteor shower on one more day.
Ensure that you are in a dark sky region and have an unobstructed view towards the south.
Lie down on a blanket or sit in a lawn chair to guarantee that you have a broad perspective of the sky.
Your naked eye is the best instrument to use to see meteors – don’t use binoculars or a telescope as these have narrow fields of view.
Permit your eyes to adjust to the dark and don’t take a gander at any lights, or at your phone, to keep up with your dark adaptation.
Whenever you’ve found Delta Aquarii in the sky, turn away from the radiant point – on the off chance that you look toward the radiant you will just see short meteors. Meteors will show up longer the further away from the radiant you look, so point your look around 45 degrees from Delta Aquarii.
Origin of the Delta Aquariid meteor shower
A meteor shower happens when the Earth goes through a stream of debris left behind by a comet. As the pieces of rock and dust in the stream of debris collide with the Earth’s atmosphere, they catch fire and make red hot streaks across the sky.
There is still some vulnerability concerning the parent comet responsible for producing the Delta Aquariid meteor shower. It was thought that the meteor shower started from the separation of the Marsden and Kracht sungrazing comets – comets that get within around 850,000 miles (approx. 1 400 000 kilometers) of the Sun at their nearest approach.
Recently nonetheless, another sungrazing comet called Comet 96P/Machholz has been distinguished as the probable source of the meteor shower. Found in 1986 by Donald Machholz, the comet has an expected diameter of 4 miles (6.4 kilometers) and requires a little more than 5 years to finish one orbit around the Sun. As the comet gets heated by the Sun, ice in the comet disintegrates and slackens small pieces of rock and dust which form the stream of debris that creates the Delta Aquariids meteor shower.
How to watch Delta Aquariids meteor shower?
The Delta Aquariids meteor shower is best seen in the Southern Hemisphere and southern latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. That incorporates:
- East and Central Asia
- Eastern, Central, and Western Europe
- portions of North America like Oregon and northern California, Wyoming, Colorado, Iowa, Ohio, Virginia, and North Carolina
On the off chance that you look somewhere close to the horizon and the zenith, and 45 degrees from the constellation of Aquarius, you will actually want to see it’s signature bright streaks.
It’s ideal to watch from a dimly lit region to improve perspective on the sky and to block out any light coming from screens of electronic gadgets, or flashlights and permit your eyes to get acclimated with the darkness for around 30 minutes before you look up.
On the off chance that you live in a crowded city, your best shots at seeing the meteor shower are from on top of a roof or in a large park.