|Quadrantids Meteor Shower January 3, 2018 ⬅︎|
| The Quadrantids is the first meteor shower of the year. It occurs from Jan 1st through the 5th but peaks on the evening of the 3rd especially after midnight.
The radiant, or center point, of the shower is in the Constellation Bootes. It is easy to find Bootes because the handle of the Big Dipper points downwards to Bootes' brightest star Arcturus.
The radiant will be below the horizon in the NW sky after sunset on the 3rd. This is where to start looking but only about 1/4 of the meteors will appear above the horizon.
After midnight, the radiant will rise in the NE sky and that's when the show will get better. During the hours before sunrise, it may be possible to see over 100 meteors per hour -- one of the highest rates of all meteor showers.
Meteors, also known as shooting stars, are just tiny pieces of rock and dust left behind by passing comets. When they collide with earth's atmosphere, their great speeds cause the flashes of light that we see as they burn up.
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