September Meteor Showers 2023: Is There a Meteor Shower Tonight?

~3 min

Three meteor showers — the Alpha Aurigids, the September Epsilon Perseids, and the Daytime Sextantids — will produce the greatest number of meteors in September. Wonder how to catch "shooting stars" tonight? Read our article to find out everything about September meteor showers!


Get more tips for watching meteors to maximize your chances of catching the spectacular stellar show in the sky, and then take our quiz about meteor showers to see how well you've prepared for meteor hunting!

Meteor Showers Quiz
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September 1: Alpha Aurigids

  • Designation: 206 AUR
  • ZHR: 6
  • Moon illumination: 98%
  • Active: August 28 - September 5
  • Constellation: Auriga
  • Visible from: Both hemispheres

The peak of the Alpha Aurigid meteor shower will mark the beginning of the month: on September 1, this stream will produce its maximum rate of meteors. However, the shower will be difficult to observe as it will occur the day after the Full Moon, and the Moon's light will wash out most of the meteors. The shower's radiant point will be highest in the sky at about 7 a.m. local time, so the best viewing time for it will be a few hours before dawn.

The Alpha Aurigids meteors appear to originate from the point near the bright star Alpha Aurigae also known as Capella, in the constellation Auriga; they enter the atmosphere at a velocity of 66 km/s. This meteor shower can produce rare activity outbursts observed in 1935, 1986, 1994, and 2019, but it typically exhibits a zenithal hourly rate of six meteors per hour. This rare meteor shower has been known since 1935 when its remarkable activity was observed by C. Hoffmeister and A. Teichgraeber. The parent body of the stream is the long-period comet C/1911 N1 Kiess.

September 9: September Epsilon Perseids

  • Designation: 208 SPE
  • ZHR: 5
  • Moon illumination: 27%
  • Active: September 5 - September 21
  • Constellation: Perseus
  • Visible from: Both hemispheres

The September Epsilon Perseids will produce up to 5 meteors per hour during the peak of activity on September 9. The waning crescent Moon at this point won’t hinder the observations. The radiant point of the Epsilon Perseids will be at its highest around 4 a.m. local time, so start observing the shower around the same time.

Don't confuse this shower with the famous August Perseids! Unlike the August Perseids, the September Epsilon Perseids are not caused by the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle. Presumably, the parent body of the Epsilon Perseid meteors is an unknown long-period comet. Radiating from a point near the star Epsilon Persei in central Perseus, these swift meteors enter the Earth’s atmosphere at a velocity of 64 km/s.

September 27: Daytime Sextantids

  • Designation: 221 DSX
  • ZHR: 5
  • Moon illumination: 95%
  • Active: September 9 - October 9
  • Constellation: Sextans
  • Visible from: Both hemispheres

The Daytime Sextantids will peak on September 27. The radiant of this meteor shower lies in the constellation Sextans, close to the Sun, so the Daytime Sextantids are only visible shortly before dawn. To spot the Daytime Sextantids’ meteors, start observations around 4-5 a.m. local time when the Sun doesn’t block the view.

These meteors are medium-slow — they enter the terrestrial atmosphere at a velocity of 32 km/s. The source of this weak stream is Apollo asteroid 2005 UD.

When is the next meteor shower?

Our stargazing app Sky Tonight will help you quickly determine the peak time of a meteor shower and the position of its radiant, check the Moon's phase, and get other useful and interesting information for meteor hunting. Here is how to do it in three steps:

  • Tap the calendar button on the main screen.
  • Go to the “Meteors” tab to see which meteor showers are currently active. Each active shower in the calendar is marked with a colored line; peaks of activity are marked with dots.
  • Find the meteor shower you want to observe and tap the target button next to its name. The app will show the position of the shower’s radiant on the sky map on a given date.

Bottom line

September brings forth a trio of meteor showers: the Alpha Aurigids, September Epsilon Perseids, and Daytime Sextantids, the latter occurring during the daytime. While these showers may only produce about 6 meteors per hour, they are still worth seeing. Get the Sky Tonight app to keep up with the best celestial events each month.

Wishing you clear skies and happy observations!