Quadrantid Meteor Shower 2013: When and Where to Watch

Today marks the last day of the 2012, and 2013 will begin with excitement as the annual Quadrantid meteor shower will enter Earth’s atmosphere during the first week of the new year. Sky observers can admire the spectacle during the last hours of January 3 into dawn of January 4. So who will be lucky enough to successfully see and enjoy the shower’s peak?

According to the Observer’s Handbook, the universal peak time will be at 1300 UTC. To translate your time zone in UTC, you can find out here. NASA reports that the event will begin during January 1, but its peak will be most visible during the first hours of January 4. The peak time is only an estimate, so devoted observers should exercise their patience for several hours between January 3 and January 4.

According to NASA, "The Quadrantids have a maximum rate of about 100 per hour varying from 60-200. The waxing gibbous moon will set around 3 am local time, leaving about two hours of excellent meteor observing before dawn.”

NASA also provides a unique history of the Quadrantrid meteor showers. The Quadrantids are unique because their peaks only last a few hours, whereas Perseid and Geminid showers have longer durations. The name Quadrantid originates from the constellation Quadrans Muralis which was discovered in 1795 by French astronomer Jerome Lalande. The first recorded meteor shower that originated from the constellation’s location occurred in 1825, therefore giving the event its name.

 

The best place to watch is contingent on the shower’s radiant point is in the Northern Hemisphere. The map courtesy of Earth and Moon Viewer above shows predicted areas of day and night during the Quadrantid shower. Based on the map, Asia may be able to see the beginning of the shower’s peak, and North America may be able to experience the event as well during the dawn of January 4th.

NASA will provide a live-stream of the meteor shower during the evening of January 2 through January 4. The live feed can be found at NASA’s Ustream channel. Once again, the date and time of the annual Quadrantid shower is a scientific estimate, however die-hard sky gazers will venture outdoors and the cold temperatures nonetheless. Footage compiled from August 2012’s Perseid Meteor shower may provide a preview of what the  2013 Quadrantid shower may look like.


How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Shawna Gillen

Shawna is currently studying Political Science and Psychology at Marist College. She has a passion for politics and is an aspiring lawyer. In her spare time she likes to play club women's rugby, and contributes as the Co-News Editor for Marist's student newspaper.

MORE FROM

Meet the Girl Scouts that will earn badges for being cybersecurity experts

They'll soon get badges for coding, cryptography and more.

How to use the Snapchat Map while everyone else continues to be confused about it

Everything you need to know about the new feature.

Planet 10? Scientists may have discovered a hidden planet in our solar system

There could be a ninth — or even 10th — planet hiding out in our solar system.

Scientists created a robot that will iron your clothes for you

Shut up and take my money.

Moth eyes have inspired the touchscreen of the future

It's going to change the anti-reflection game.

Twitter was flagging tweets including the word "queer" as potentially "offensive content"

Why Twitter put the word "queer" in the same category as violent, sexual imagery.

Meet the Girl Scouts that will earn badges for being cybersecurity experts

They'll soon get badges for coding, cryptography and more.

How to use the Snapchat Map while everyone else continues to be confused about it

Everything you need to know about the new feature.

Planet 10? Scientists may have discovered a hidden planet in our solar system

There could be a ninth — or even 10th — planet hiding out in our solar system.

Scientists created a robot that will iron your clothes for you

Shut up and take my money.

Moth eyes have inspired the touchscreen of the future

It's going to change the anti-reflection game.

Twitter was flagging tweets including the word "queer" as potentially "offensive content"

Why Twitter put the word "queer" in the same category as violent, sexual imagery.