Famous Eta Aquariid Meteor Shower Shows off First Half of May, Best to Observe May 4-7

By:  Leogiver Mañosca
10:42 AM May 3, 2019

A PAS member poses for a photo with the Milky Way Galaxy as background (Photo by Bryan Mistola/PAS)

MANILA, Philippines - If meteors draw much of your attention, perhaps the Eta Aquariid Meteor Shower offers a lengthy stretch of remarkable shooting stars that Filipino sky observers can spot in the night sky this month!

Commonly known as the Eta Aquariid or Eta Aquarids, this meteor shower is usually active between April 19 and May 28 every year. It is best observed on the nights and pre-dawn hours of May 4-7 in the Philippines with around 40-50 meteors per hour this year in a clear and dark sky. The peak hours for the shower is broad that more observers are fortunate to have a chance of observing a good count.

This year’s Eta Aquarids is an ideal catch few hours prior to sunrise, while the remainder of the night has low meteor frequency. More so, the first half of this month provides a very thin moon and it is new on May 5, providing observers a decent show of this ancient cosmic debris left by the Halley’s Comet in orbit.

The Eta Aquarids appear to radiate from the constellation Aquarius, hence the name. However, it is important to note that meteor shower activity is rarely seen at the radiant position and the shower-associated meteors may be seen several hours before the radiant in Aquarius rises at around 4am, southeast

No special equipment is needed to enjoy a meteor shower. A dark cloudless sky and a little bit of luck is all you need.

Eta Aquariid Meteor Shower Observation Camp 2019

MAY 4 - 5 | BIG HANDY'S GROUNDS | TANAY, RIZAL

Eta Aquariids Camp 2019 poster which shows PAS facilitators having a tea party at the campsite (Photo by Bryan Mistola/PAS)

On May 4-5, officers, members, and guests of the Philippine Astronomical Society, Inc. will head to the grounds of Tanay, Rizal as they try their luck to witness the magnificent shower of meteors.

According to PAS President Kashogi Astapan, “Remember that it takes about 30 minutes before your eyes adjust to the dark. The longer you wait, the more meteors you will see”.

“Just keep looking up!”, Astapan added. 

© PHILIPPINE ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY, 2020                                                                            www.philastrosociety.com