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Today MS
Today's Meteor Activity

The 'Today's Meteor Activity' graphic shows the averaged daily Meteor Activity provided by the Radio Meteor Observing Bulletin (RMOB). It's updated every hour. This graphic is free for linking to from your own website by using this link


Relatively high rates of sporadic meteors and a fairly good shower (with potential surprises on some others) make this period pretty attractive.

At the beginning of the month, have a look to October Camelopardalids. Short video outbursts were first recorded in 2005 and 2006 on October 5-6 (near λsol=193 degs). Estimated ZHR was about 5 hr-1 with annual peak at λsol=192.58 degs. Enhanced activity was then found at the predicted position on 2016 October 5, in radio and video observations, and on 2018 October 6, 00h30m UT (λsol=192.45 degs, ZHR=5), equivalent to 2020 October 5, 12h40m UT: worth to have a check!

Draconids are a periodic shower which produced spectacular storms (as in 1933 and 1946) and huge outbursts as in 2011 (ZHR around 300 hr-1). A wholly unexpected outburst of faint radio meteors took place in 2012, while the 2018 return, as the stream's parent comet (21P / Giacobini-Zinner) reached perihelion on 2018 September 10, yelded a ZHR of about 150 hr-1, lasting for about 4 hours. The maximum is expected to occur at λsol=195.4 degs (October 8, 12h30m UT) but additional trail encounters are excpected in 2020. According to Jeremie Vaubaillon calculations, 1704 Trail will encounter Earth orbit on October 7, 01h25m UT, and 1711 Trail will be encountered on October 7, 01h57m UT. In both cases, related ZHR is uncertain.

Orionids will ensure reasonable rates, although not as good as that detected some years ago. Recent returns (2006-2009) were characterized by strong meteor activity (ZHR up to 70 hr-1 on 2 or 3 consecutive dates). A 12-year periodicity in stronger returns due to Jupiter's influence has been found, although most recent returns seem to have had a separate resonant cause (meteoroids trapped in a resonance region). That suggests the best years were 2008-2010, with a sort of minimum around 2014-2016, so Orionids ZHRs may now slowly increase again. The higher activity phase of this new cycle should fall between 2020 - 2022. ZHR for 2020 is expected to be more than 20 hr-1, peaking October 21st.
Orionids often provide several lesser maxima, helping meteor activity remain roughly constant for several consecutive days centered on the main peak. Note that, in 1993 and 1998, a submaximum about as strong as the main peak was detected on Oct. 17-18.

Pay also attention to Taurids. The complex of Southern (STA) and Northern Taurids (NTA) is associated with comet 2P/Encke and sometimes produces an unusual activity of bright-to-fireball class meteors, due to resonance with Jupiter. This enhanced meteoroid activity was named as the "swarm". Please note that recent studies have shown that Taurid swarm exists only in southern branch (STA).

According to Jeremie Vaubaillon calculations, a possible meteor activity from the Near Earth Object 2015 TB145 (which is suspected to be an extint comet nucleus) is expected at λsol=217.659 degs, equivalent to 2020 October 20, 22h09m UT. Also in this case, ZHR is not predictable.

For Radio Observers, the (theoretical) UT peaks for upcoming showers in October 2020 are as follows:

October Camelopardalids
Active: October 05 - October 06
Maximum: October 05 (λsol= 192.58 degs)
ZHR: Low (5 hr-1)

Active: October 06 - October 10
Maximum: October 08, 12h30m UT (λsol= 195.4 degs)
ZHR: Variable - typically 10 hr-1, but may reach storm level

Southern Taurids
Active: September 10 - November 20
Maximum: October 10 (λsol= 197 degs)
ZHR: Low (5 hr-1)

Active: October 10 - October 18
Maximum: October 11 (λsol= 198 degs)
ZHR: Low

ε- Geminids
Active: October 14 - October 27
Maximum: October 18 (λsol= 205 degs)
ZHR: Low

Active: October 02 - November 07
Maximum: October 21 (λsol= 208 degs)
ZHR: Medium (20 hr-1)

Leonis Minorids
Active: October 19 - October 27
Maximum: October 24 (λsol= 211 degs)
ZHR: Low

Source: IMO