As the earth rotates around the sun all year round, it passes streams of cosmic debris. The resulting meteor showers can light up the night sky from dusk to dawn, and if you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of them.

The next shower you may be able to see is known as the Eta-Aquariiden, sometimes also called the Eta-Aquariiden. It’s active April 19 through May 28, and is expected to peak Wednesday evening through Thursday morning or May 5 through 6.

The Eta-Aquariids are one of two meteor showers from Halley’s comet. The sister shower, the Orionids, will peak in October. Spots from the Eta-Aquariids roam the sky at about 148,000 miles per hour, making it one of the fastest meteor showers. The display is better seen from the southern hemisphere, where people typically enjoy between 20 and 30 meteors per hour during their peak. The northern hemisphere sees about half as many.

According to the International Meteor Organization, the Eta Aquariids are best seen a few hours before sunrise.

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When you spot a meteor shower, you usually see the remains of an icy comet crashing into Earth’s atmosphere. Comets are like dirty snowballs: when they travel through the solar system, they leave a dusty trail of stones and ice that lingers in space long after they leave. As Earth passes these cascades of cometary debris, the debris – which can be as small as grains of sand – penetrates the sky at such a rate that it bursts and creates heavenly fireworks.

A general rule of thumb when it comes to meteor showers: you never watch the earth turn into debris from a comet’s final orbit. Instead, the burning parts come from the previous rounds. For example, during the Perseid meteor shower, you’ll see meteors that were ejected when their parent comet, Comet Swift-Tuttle, visited in 1862 or earlier, not from its last pass in 1992.

According to Bill Cooke, an astronomer with NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office, it takes time for debris to drift out of a comet’s orbit into a position where it intersects Earth’s orbit.

The best way to see a meteor shower is to get to a place from which you can freely see the entire night sky. Ideally, it would be somewhere with dark skies, away from city lights and traffic. To maximize your chances of seeing the show, look for a location that offers expansive, unobstructed views.

Parts of meteor showers are visible for a certain period of time, but on certain days they reach a visible peak from dusk to dawn. During these days, Earth orbit traverses the thickest part of the cosmic current. Meteor showers can vary in their peak times, with some reaching their maximums for just a few hours and others for several nights.