Meteor Activity Outlook for December 6-12, 2014

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Radiant Positions at 8pm Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

Radiant Positions at 8pm Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

Radiant Positions at Midnight Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

Radiant Positions at Midnight Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

Radiant positions at 4am Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

Radiant positions at 4am Local Standard Time from 40N Latitude

During this period the moon reaches its full phase on Saturday December 6th. At this time the moon lies in the sky all night long and obscures all but the brightest meteors. Toward the end of this period the moon will approach its last quarter phase and will not be nearly as bright as when full. This will allow observers to view meteor activity as long as they keep the moon out of their field of view. The estimated total hourly meteor rates for evening observers this week is near 3 as seen from the northern hemisphere (45N) and 2 as seen from southern tropical latitudes (25S). For morning observers the estimated total hourly rates should be near 13 as seen from the northern hemisphere and 10 as seen from below the equator. The actual rates will also depend on factors such as personal light and motion perception, local weather conditions, alertness and experience in watching meteor activity. Note that the hourly rates listed below are estimates as viewed from dark sky sites away from urban light sources. Observers viewing from urban areas will see less activity as only the brightest meteors will be visible from such locations. Rates are reduced during this period due to the bright moon.

The radiant (the area of the sky where meteors appear to shoot from) positions and rates listed below are exact for Saturday night/Sunday morning December 6/7. These positions do not change greatly day to day so the listed coordinates may be used during this entire period. Most star atlases (available at science stores and planetariums) will provide maps with grid lines of the celestial coordinates so that you may find out exactly where these positions are located in the sky. A planisphere or computer planetarium program is also useful in showing the sky at any time of night on any date of the year. Activity from each radiant is best seen when it is positioned highest in the sky, either due north or south along the meridian, depending on your latitude. It must be remembered that meteor activity is rarely seen at the radiant position. Rather they shoot outwards from the radiant so it is best to center your field of view so that the radiant lies at the edge and not the center. Viewing there will allow you to easily trace the path of each meteor back to the radiant (if it is a shower member) or in another direction if it is a sporadic. Meteor activity is not seen from radiants that are located below the horizon. The positions below are listed in a west to east manner in order of right ascension (celestial longitude). The positions listed first are located further west therefore are accessible earlier in the night while those listed further down the list rise later in the night.

These sources of meteoric activity are expected to be active this week. The information is exact for December 7th but may be used in most cases for the entire week. Details on each radiant will again appear in next weeks outlook when the moonlight will be much more favorable.

RA (RA in Deg.) DEC Km/Sec Local Standard Time North-South
Anthelion (ANT) 05:48 (087) +23 27 00:00 2 – 1 II
November Orionids (NOO) Nov 29 06:28 (097) +15 44 01:00 <1 – <1 II
Monocerotids (MON) Dec 13 06:40 (100) +09 41 02:00 1 – <1 I
Geminids (GEM) Dec 13 06:56 (104) +33 34 02:00 1 – <1 I
Sigma Hydrids (HYD) Dec 07 08:16 (124) +03 61 03:00 1 – 1 II
Puppid-Velids (PUP) Dec 07 08:56 (134) -48 42 04:00 1 – 3 II
Eta Hydrids (EHY) Dec 12 09:00 (135) +02 63 04:00 <1 – <1 IV
Dec. Leonis Minorids (DLM) Dec 21 10:00 (150) +36 63 06:00 <1 – <1 IV
Psi Ursa Majorids (PSU) Dec 05 11:24 (171) +43 61 06:00 1 – <1 IV
Dec. Chi Virginids (XVI) Dec 17 12:28 (187) +04 69 08:00 <1 – <1 IV
Dec. Sigma Virginids (DSV) Dec 24 12:44 (191) +08 68 08:00 <1 – <1 IV



  • Jill King 2 years ago


    I just spotted what looked like a meteor. I’m in Sterling VA, 20164. I was facing mostly north (just slightly east), and it was exactly 7pm EST according to my clock.

    -Jill King

    Reply to Jill
  • jeff bissett 2 years ago

    Well I’m bout to go out and check out the skies this evening and the next for a few days, because unfortunately here in Michigan Saturday night and Sunday morning are looking over cast,. But hope fully will see a good amount.. goodluck every one!!

    Reply to jeff
  • Udo Putzke 2 years ago

    I spotted a Shooting star last night on the south west to east in Poway CA 92064 around 7PM. Bright long and fast.

    Reply to Udo
  • Eric 2 years ago

    I saw a bright green ball of light in South Peabody this morning (12-12-14) around 6:10 EST. It seemed like it was only around 2 or 3 hundred yards above the ground and it had a tail. Perhaps it is part of the Geminids?

    Reply to Eric
  • Zachary Paul 2 years ago

    I was on a walk with my friend Verito and my dog Oreo. I was so surprised when a saw a meteor. I live in Los Angeles , Ca on Cliffwood ave. it was awesome! it was 7: 37 pm the time we saw it.

    Reply to Zachary
  • Tom Simcoe 2 years ago


    You may remember me I’m the one that saw the two fireballs within a couple of weeks in alabama. Well I’m back home in Kentucky and tonight while viewing the north west sky my wife and i witnessed a streaking white fireball with a sparkly tail and after about two seconds it seemed to stall or explode and it just stayed there for at least 6 minutes. Then the ball of debris stated moving again toward the earth very slowly until it disappeared behind the mountain off in the distance. I have never seen anything like this. The entire event lasted ~15-20 mins. My wife took pics with her phone but they look like a small white dot nothing compared to what we witnessed. It was around 16302 EST

    Reply to Tom

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