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May meteors: the Eta Aquarids.

The Eta Aquarid meteor shower should be at its peak on the morning of May 6th, though it runs for a few days before and after as well. This is the best annual meteor shower for the Southern Hemisphere. For observers at mid-northern latitudes, however, the radiant is still quite low in the southeast even just before dawn; therefore fewer meteors appear in view, no matter where in the sky you're watching. (The best direction to watch is wherever your sky is darkest).

Far-southerners can duck the waxing gibbous Moon on the morning of May 6th; at 30 [degrees] south latitude it sets more than an hour before the start of astronomical twilight.

The Eta Aquarids, like the Orionids of October, are bits of debris shed by Comet Halley.

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Title Annotation:Celestial Calendar
Publication:Sky & Telescope
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2009
Words:129
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