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2014 Eta Aquarids

Activity dates:                             April 19 - May 28      Peak rates   May 5-6      Peak ZHR  50-70

Moonlight issues at maximum :   First Quarter Moon setting late in night

Best Observed Rates :                Shower is only visible late in the night

The Eta Aquarid meteor shower - the post-perihelion encounter with the meteor stream of comet 1P/Halley - has tended to be ignored by UK observers. With the radiant only starting to rise above the eastern horizon late in the night (in morning twilight for observers in Scotland), few Eta Aquarid meteors, if any, are likely to be seen. 

In 2013, however, the Eta Aquarids sprang a surprise and several Eta Aquarid meteors were imaged from the UK by Alex Pratt (see http://www.popastro.com/meteor/reports/report.php?id_secRep=154 ) and William Stewart of the NEMETODE network (www.nemetode.org). This enhanced activity tied in with a last minute prediction from Mikiya Sato that the Earth would encounter several old filaments (from 8-11 centuries ago) in the Eta Aquarid meteor stream during May 6th. 

At maximum, the Eta Aquarid radiant lies at RA 22h32m , Dec -01  - in the top left corner of Aquarius (see the chart below)

Eta Aquarids are very swift meteors, often with long paths because of their low radiant, and fine persistent trains.