Meteor showers on Earth are caused by streams of meteoroids hitting our atmosphere. These meteoroids are sand- and pebble-sized bits of rock that were once released from their parent comet. Some comets are no longer active and are now called asteroids.
This visualization shows these meteoroid streams orbiting the Sun, some stretching to the outer regions of the solar system. Select the meteor shower in the menu to see the corresponding meteoroid stream in space. Their meteoroid orbits are based on those measured by NASA's CAMS video camera surveillance network, and were calculated by meteor astronomer Peter Jenniskens of the SETI Institute and NASA Ames Research Center.
This visualization is developed and hosted by Ian Webster.
Meteor showers are best seen on certain dark and clear nights. To see how many meteors per hour are visible from your location, go to this website and select the date, the shower, and your location.
Sure! Use the following code to load the interactive visualization in an iframe. You must know the IAU number of your meteor shower, which you can look up here.
<iframe src="http://www.heyunquan.com/view/iau-7" width="500" height="500" frameBorder="0"></iframe>
Please remember to attribute this site!
The visualization engine used for MeteorShowers.org has been released as SpaceKit.js. Give it a try!