Astronomy and SpaceScience

9 Meteor Showers and Bright Morning Stars this December

The last month of the year is usually the busiest, and the sky is joining in the bustle because there will be a lot of astronomical events to watch out for in the month of December.

According to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), there will be not one, not two, but nine meteor showers that can be witnessed this month. Among these meteor showers, the Geminids will have the highest Zenithal Hourly Rate (ZHR), with 120 meteors observable in an hour during its peak.  The Earth’s twin, Venus, will also be at its maximum brightest on December 8.

December 2021 Astronomical Events

Here’s the calendar of astronomical events for the month of December so you can set your alarms:

DateEventBest Viewed Time
02Pheonicid Meteor Shower
(ZHR = var)
08:00 PM
06December φ-Cassiopeid Meteor Shower
(ZHR = var)
09:00 PM
07Puppid-Velid Meteor Shower
(ZHR = 10)
03:00 AM
#rowspan# Moon passing 1°52' S of Venus 08:49 AM
08Venus at greatest brightness 12:09 AM
Moon passing 4°11' S of Saturn 09:49 AM
09Monocerotid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 2) 01:00 AM
#rowspan# Moon passing 4°28' S of Jupiter 02:10 PM
12σ-Hydrid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 3) 03:00 AM
14Geminid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 120) 02:00 AM
16 Comae Berenicid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 3) before dawn
19December Leonis Minorid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 5) 05:00 AM
21December Solstice 11:59 PM
22Ursid Meteor Shower (ZHR = 10) before dawn

What direction should I look to see the meteor showers?

With the help of technology, it will be fairly easy to find out which direction you should look up to see the meteor showers. You can download Sky Map (FREE) or Stellarium (PAID) to search for the constellations or radiant where the meteor will be visible. Use the table below as a guide to find out where each meteor shower will radiate from.

Meteor Shower NameRadiantActive DatePeak DateBest Viewed Time
PheonicidsPhoenix28 Nov - 09 Dec02 Dec08:00 P.M.
December φ Cassiopeids Andromeda01 - 08 Dec06 Dec09:00 P.M.
Puppid-Velids Vela01 - 15 Dec07 Dec03:00 A.M.
Monocerotids Monoceros05 - 20 Dec09 Dec01:00 A.M.
σ-Hydrids Hydra03 - 15 Dec12 Dec03:00 A.M.
Geminids Gemini04 - 17 Dec14 Dec02:00 A.M.
Comae Berenicids Leo12 - 23 Dec16 Decbefore dawn
December Leonis Minorids Leo Minor05 Dec - 04 Feb19 Dec05:00 A.M.
Ursids Ursa Minor17 - 26 Dec22 Decbefore dawn

How to view the meteor showers

NASA suggests that you look for an area that is well away from city or street lights when viewing the meteor showers this December.

The agency also advised viewers to lie flat on their back with feet facing east and look up, taking in as much of the sky as possible. After about 30 minutes in the dark, your eyes will adapt and by then you will start to see meteors


How do you feel about this?

Not Sure

You may also like

Comments are closed.