Alpha Centaurids: Meteor Shower in February 2023

~2 min

In early February 2023, observe the Alpha Centaurid meteor shower! It will reach its peak around February 8, producing up to 6 meteors per hour. Here you’ll find more details on the upcoming meteor shower.


Alpha Centaurids Facts

  • Meteors/hour: 6
  • Active: Jan 28 - Feb 21
  • Peak of activity: Feb 8
  • Radiant location: Centaurus
  • Parent body: Unknown
  • Visible from: Southern Hemisphere
  • Viewing conditions in 2023: Not good (96% illuminated Moon)

According to the American Meteor Society, the Alpha Centaurids is a minor meteor shower. Such meteor streams produce from 2 to 10 meteors per hour at maximum activity. This year, the Alpha Centaurids will occur shortly after the Full Moon, which will outshine most of the meteors. So, keep looking for meteors until at least February 15 while the Alpha Centaurids’ activity is still high.

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Meteor Showers Quiz
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When does the Alpha Centaurid meteor shower start?

The Alpha Centaurids start on January 28, reach their peak activity around February 8, and end on February 21. Watch the meteor shower near 05:00 local time, when its radiant (positioned in the constellation Centaurus) is high above the horizon.

What direction is the Alpha Centaurid meteor shower?

The Alpha Centaurids appear to originate from the constellation Centaurus. It’s the ninth-largest constellation in the sky that is famous for containing Alpha Centauri, the closest star to the Solar System. The exact location of the radiant is 4° northwest of the star Hadar (beta Centauri). The meteor shower is best observed in the Southern Hemisphere, visible up to 32°N.

The easiest way to find the position of the Alpha Centaurids’ radiant is to use a stargazing app. Here is how to do it with the free app Sky Tonight:

  • Open the app and tap the magnifier icon.
  • On the search bar, type the name of the meteor shower — “Alpha Centaurids.”
  • Choose the fitting result and tap the blue target button. The app will show you the meteor shower’s radiant position on the sky map.
  • To find the Alpha Centaurids’ radiant in the sky above you, tap the blue compass button or point your device to the sky. You’ll see the white arrow that will guide you to the radiant position. Move your device following the arrow, until you see the Alpha Centaurids’ radiant on the screen. The image corresponds to the real sky at your location.

Don’t get upset if the Alpha Centaurids aren’t visible from your location, you’ll certainly find another prolific shower to observe in our meteor shower calendar for 2023.

Bottom line: The Alpha Centaurids meteor shower is well-seen in the Southern Hemisphere. In 2023, it peaks around February 8, but the almost Full Moon will hinder the view. To spot more meteors, keep checking the meteor shower’s activity up to February 15.