There's something about a meteor shower that sets our hearts ablaze with wonder & delight at the sheer magic of our universe. The Quadrantids meteor shower will illuminate Florida skies soon & across the U.S. — and here's what you need to know to see it.
This excellent radiant shower will produce up to 120 meteors per hour, dashing across the sky in a spectacular display. The meteors will rain down from the constellation Boötes off of asteroid 2003 EH1, which orbits our sun every 5 and a half years.
Why doesn't this shower share a name with its constellation? Most meteor showers will, and this used to be the case.
It was named after the no longer recognized Quadran Muralis constellation; however, it was later left off a list written by the International Astronomical Union in 1922.
Since the shower already donned the name, they chose to leave it the same rather than change it to be Bootids after the modern name for the constellation, although it is still sometimes called that.
While most meteor showers peak for a couple of days, this delightful display will only peak for a few hours — leaving your viewing window of the out of this world spectacle really short between the hours of 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. on Friday, January 3rd, 2020 into Saturday the 4th.
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Talk about a way to ring in the New Year, making a wish on a "shooting star".
If you want a chance to catch a glimpse of this shower near Tampa, you're going to need to look about 35 degrees northeast over the horizon of Azimuth (also known as true north).
The shower will not only be visible in Tampa but also across the Sunshine State. Time and Date also enable you to enter your city, seeing adjusted directions that you'll need to look for in your area.
You can see the varying direction and altitude as the night progresses for where to look in the Tampa region below.
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According to Time and Date, a compass may show a slightly different value than true north; if you need help locating where the shower will rain down from, you can use their interactive star map entering your location here.The visibility is expected to be excellent, as long as cloud cover remains low.
To get the best view, you'll want to head to a place with low light pollution approximately 15 to 20 minutes prior to the start of the meteor shower and look towards the direction they will shoot across the sky.
If you need some inspiration on where to set up camp to watch the show, these 7 spots were perfect for December's shower, and these 6 spots are known to host perfect conditions to stargaze.
We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.