2021 Meteor Shower Calendar

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The 31st International Meteor Organization Meteor Shower Calendar is available!

Our friends at the IMO just released their annual meteor shower calendar for 2021. The main intention of the annual International Meteor Organization Meteor Shower Calendar is to draw the attention of observers to regularly returning meteor showers as well as to provide information about events which may be possible according to model calculations. This includes both the possibility of extra meteor activity in terms of additional peaks and/or enhanced rates but also the observational evidence of no rate or density enhancement. Both may help to improve our knowledge about the numerous effects and interactions between meteoroid parent objects and the streams. Further, the Calendar hopefully continues to be a useful tool to plan your meteor observing activities.

2021 Highlights

  • The waning gibbous Moon will be a nuisance for the expected Quadrantid meteor shower (QUA) maximum on January 3rd 14h30m UT – λ⊙ 283 . ◦15, expected ZHR = 120 (can vary ≈ 60–200). The 14h30 UT timing for the peak will be favourable for Eastern Asia, whereas America and Europe should spot the activity increase all along the preceding night. The λ⊙ = 283 . ◦15 maximum timing is based on the best-observed return of the shower ever analysed, from IMO data collected in 1992, as confirmed by radio results in most years since 1996.
  • Small Moon crescent will create minor light interference with the eta-Aquariids shower (ETA), which is more easily observed from the Southern hemisphere. Maximum is expected on May 6th 03h UT, and is best observed during a short observing window before morning twilight.
  • Famous Perseid meteor shower (PER) will be favored by the New Moon on August 8, just before its maximum on August 12th 19-22h UT – λ⊙ 140 . ◦0, expected ZHR = 110. Earth will potentially cross a weak filament on August 12, around 15h30 UT.
  • During Perseids activity period, Earth will pass close (0.00010 au) to a 1-rev. dust trail associated to C/1852 K1 on August 12th 04h22 UT.
  • Several models also predicts multiple activity outburst at the end of September and beginning of October. This source, associated to comet 15P/Finlay, could be the source of ZHR that could reach 100.
  • Well known for a strong activity outburst predicted and observed in 2007, the Aurigid meteor shower (AUR) could produce a similar display this year, on August 31st around 21h17-35 UT. ZHR are difficult to estimate, but could reach 50 to 100 level.
  • Moon is full on December 18 and thus let a few hours before dawn to observe the best and reliable Geminid meteor shower (GEM) maximum on December 14 07h00m UT – λ⊙ 262 . ◦2, with an expected ZHR = 150. The timing for the peak will be favourable for American observers. Peaks ZHRs were slightly increasing over the past years and now reach up to 140-150 levels.

Meteor Shower Calendar 2021
also available in German

The heart of the Calendar is the IMO Working List of Visual Meteor Showers which is continuously updated so that it is the single most accurate listing available anywhere today for visual meteor observing. Nevertheless, it is a Working List which is subject to further modifications, based on the best data we had at the time the Calendar was written. Observers should always check for later changes noted in the IMO’s journal WGN or on the IMO website. Vice versa, we are always interested to receive information whenever you find any anomalies! To allow for better correlation with other meteor shower data sources, we give the complete shower designation including the codes taken from IAU’s Meteor Data Center listings.


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