June 21, 2024
1 Solar System Way, Planet Earth, USA
Astronomy

Meteor showers in 2024

Geminid meteor shower
Geminid meteor shower over Kitt Peak National Observatory. Credit: KPNO/NOIRLab/NSF/AURA/R. Sparks (NSF NOIRLab). License: CC BY 4.0.

Go out on a clear night in 2024 and you may find yourself in the middle of a celestial spectacle that promises to dazzle the night sky: meteor showers.

As Earth passes debris trails from comets and asteroids, a cosmic spectacle awaits stargazers around the world. Prepare to be enchanted by the meteor showers of 2024, a celestial spectacle that promises to paint the night sky with fleeting wonders.

What is a meteor shower?

A meteor shower is a celestial event in which an increased number of meteors or “shooting stars” are observed in the night sky. This phenomenon occurs when the Earth passes through the debris trail left by a comet or asteroid, causing the particles to enter the Earth's atmosphere. As these particles burn up as they enter the atmosphere, they create bright rays of light in the sky, commonly known as meteors.

Meteor showers are often named after the constellation from which the meteors appear to originate, and occur at predictable times each year when Earth crosses the debris paths of various comets or asteroids.

What are the best meteor showers of 2024?

In my many years of stargazing experience, the best meteor showers are those with the greatest top hourly rate or greater number of meteors per hour. Therefore, the best meteor showers (in chronological order) are: the Quadrantids, the Perseids and the Geminids.

Meteor showers this month

We cover meteor showers in our monthly stargazing calendars. You can find all the meteor showers visible this month in the latest edition of our stargazing calendar.

List of all meteor showers in 2024

  1. Antihelium Source: Start on December 10; multiple peaks; ends on September 10.
  2. Quadrantids: Start on December 26; peak on January 4; will end on January 12.
  3. γ-Ursae Minorida: Start on January 15; peak on January 20; will end on January 25.
  4. α-Centaurids: Start on January 28; peak on February 8; will end on February 21.
  5. γ-normids: Start on February 25; peak on March 14; will end on March 28.
  6. Lyrids: Start on April 16; peak April 22; will end on April 25.
  7. π-pupids: Start on April 15; peak April 23; will end on April 28.
  8. η-Aquarids: Start on April 19; peak on May 5; will end on May 28.
  9. η-Lyrids: Start on May 3; peak on May 8; will end on May 14.
  10. τ-Herculids: Start on May 25; peak on May 31; will end on June 4.
  11. diurnal aryetids: Start on May 14; peak June 7; will end on June 24.
  12. june boots: Start on June 22; peak June 27; will end on July 2.
  13. July Pegasids: Start on July 4; peak on July 10; will end on July 17.
  14. Austrinid Pisces: Start on July 15; peak on July 28; will end on August 10.
  15. Southern δ-Aquarids: Start on July 12; peak on July 30; will end on August 23.
  16. α-Capricornids: Start on July 3; peak on July 30; will end on August 15.
  17. η-eridanids: Start on July 31; peak August 8; will end on August 19.
  18. perseids: Start on July 17; peak on August 12; will end on August 24.
  19. κ-Cygnidae: Start on August 3; peak on August 17; will end on August 25.
  20. charioteers: Start on August 28; peak on August 31; will end on September 5.
  21. ν-eridanids: Start on September 1; peak on September 6; will end on October 29.
  22. September ε-Perseids: Start on September 5; peak on September 9; will end on September 21.
  23. χ-Cygnids: Start on September 3; peak on September 14; will end on September 25.
  24. diurnal sextantids: Start on September 9; peak on September 27; will end on October 9.
  25. October Camelopardalis: Start on October 5; peak on October 6; will end on October 6.
  26. Draconids: Start on October 6; peak on October 8; will end on October 10.
  27. Southern Taurids: Start on September 10; peak on October 10; will end on November 20.
  28. δ-Aurigids: Start on October 10; peak on October 11; will end on October 18.
  29. ε-Geminids: Start on October 14; peak on October 18; will end on October 27.
  30. Orionids: Start on October 2; peak on October 22; will end on November 7.
  31. Leonis Menoridas: Start on October 19; peak on October 24; will end on October 27.
  32. Northern Taurids: Start on October 20; peak on November 12; will end on December 10.
  33. Leonidas: Start on November 6; peak on November 17; will end on November 30.
  34. α-monocerotides: Start on November 15; peak on November 21; will end on November 25.
  35. November Orionids: Start on November 13; peak on November 28; will end on December 6.
  36. phenicides: Start on November 28; peak on December 2; will end on December 9.
  37. December φ-Casiopeids: Starts December 1; peak on December 6; will end on December 8.
  38. Pupid-Velid: Starts December 1; peak on December 7; will end on December 15.
  39. monocerotids: Start on December 5; peak on December 8; will end on December 20.
  40. σ-Hydrides: Start on December 3; peak on December 11; will end on December 15.
  41. Geminids: Start on December 4; peak on December 14; will end on December 17.
  42. Berenicidal Comas: Start on December 12; peak on December 15; will end on December 23.
  43. December Leonis Menoridas: Start on December 5; peak on December 20; will end on February 4.
  44. Ursids: Start on December 17; peak on December 22; will end on December 26.

Conclusion

As we bid farewell to the meteor showers of 2024, the celestial ballet that graced our night skies leaves a lingering sense of wonder and awe. Each shooting star, a fleeting reminder of the vastness and beauty of our universe, has illuminated our appreciation for the cosmic wonders around us.

Fountain: International Meteor Organization

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