Meteor Observation

Saturday, 4th May 2002, Delimara (Meeting near Tas-Silg Chapel) – 9:30 p.m.

A meteor observation will be held at Delimara on the 4th May. The meeting place will be near Tas-Silg Chapel (on the outskirts of Marsaxlokk) at 9.30 pm. We will then proceed to the observing site in Delimara, and observations will start at 10 pm

The subject of the observation is the annual Eta Aquarid meteor shower, which will peak on the 5th May at around 7.30 Local Time. ZHRs (Zenithal Hourly Rates – the number of meteors that would be visible in ideal conditions with the radiant at zenith) at the maximum are usually around 60. However, the maximum is relatively broad, and quite good rates can be observed even a few nights before and after the shower maximum. In fact, ZHRs were generally above 30 between about May 3-10, based on IMO observations during 1988-1997.

The radiant itself rises at around 2.30 am Local Time. Observations should therefore be done as late as possible as the number of meteors observed will be expected to increase throughout the night. However, the waning crescent moon will rise at 2.54 am Local Time, and this is expected to hinder observations somewhat, since its position will be quite close to the radiant.