Activity Outlook

Weekly Meteor Activity Outlook articles by Bob Lunsford. Bob gives outlooks to upcoming meteor activity about once a week. He features showers from the working list of meteor showers as well as suspected radiants. Please refer only to the radiants of the Working list of visual meteor showers in observing reports.

Meteor Activity Outlook for 30 April-6 May 2016

During this period the moon reaches its last quarter phase on Saturday April 30th. On that date the moon will be located 90 degrees west of the sun and will rise near 0200 local summer time (LST) for most locations in the mid-northern latitudes. As the week progresses the moon's phase will wane and it will rise later and later with each passing night. Late in the week it will be located too close to the sun to cause any interference at night. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 3 for observers located in the northern hemisphere and 4 for observers located south of the equator.

Meteor Activity Outlook for 23-29 April 2016

During this period the moon wanes from its full phase to nearly one-half illuminated. This is the worst time of the month to try and view meteor activity as the bright moonlight will obscure all but the brightest meteors. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 2 for observers located in the northern hemisphere and 3 for observers located south of the equator. For morning observers the estimated total hourly rates should be near 7 as seen from mid-northern latitudes (45N) and 9 as seen from tropical southern locations (25S). Rates are reduced during this period due to moonlight.

Meteor Activity Outlook for April 16-22, 2016

During this period the moon reaches its full phase on Friday April 22nd. On that date the moon will be located opposite the sun and will remain above the horizon all night long. This weekend the waxing gibbous moon will set during the early morning hours and will allow a few hours of viewing under dark skies between moonset and the start of morning twilight. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 2 for observers located in the northern hemisphere and 3 for observers located south of the equator. For morning observers the estimated total hourly rates should be near 9 as seen from mid-northern latitudes (45N) and 11 as seen from tropical southern locations (25S).

Meteor Activity Outlook for 9-15 April 2016

During this period the moon reaches its first quarter phase on Thursday April 14th. On that date the moon will be located 90 degrees east of the sun and will set during the mid-morning hours. This weekend the waxing crescent moon will set during the late evening hours and will not pose any problems for viewing meteor activity as long as you keep the lunar glare out of your field of view. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 3 for observers located in the northern hemisphere and 4 for observers located south of the equator. For morning observers the estimated total hourly rates should be near 8 as seen from mid-northern latitudes (45N) and 11 as seen from tropical southern locations (25S).

Meteor Activity Outlook for April 2-8, 2016

Meteor activity picks up a bit during April as the Lyrids become active during the month. They are active from the 18th through the 25th, with a pronounced maximum on the 22nd. Sporadic rates during April are steady as seen from both hemispheres with southern observers enjoying twice the activity that can be seen from the mid-northern hemisphere.

Meteor Activity Outlook for March 26-April 1, 2016

During this period the moon reaches its last quarter phase on Thursday March 31st. On that date the moon will be located 90 degrees west of the sun and will rise near 0200 daylight saving time as seen from many mid-northern latitude locations. This weekend the waning gibbous moon will rise during the late evening hours and will ruin meteor observing attempts during the remainder of the night. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 3 for observers located in the northern hemisphere and 4 for observers located south of the equator. For morning observers the estimated total hourly rates should be near 5 as seen from mid-northern latitudes (45N) and 7 as seen from tropical southern locations (25S).