Stargazers! Get ready! You are in for a treat, as the annual Geminid meteor shower is set to peak in the early hours of December 14, 2010. According to The AP, astronomers think that it will be the best meteor shower of the year. Keep reading for optimal view time, tricks, and tips on how to see the best stars.
Photo from NASA Science A Geminid meteor. Image credit: Jimmy Westlake
Comet of Origin: 3200 Phaethon
Radiant: constellation Gemini
Active: Dec. 4-16, 2010
Peak Activity: Night of Dec 13-14, 2010
Peak Activity Meteor Count: Approximately 50 meteors per hour
Time of Optimal Viewing: 2 a.m.
Meteor Velocity: 35 kilometers (22 miles) per second
Note: Generally, the Geminids or August’s Perseids provide the best meteor shower show of the year. Geminids are usually considered the best opportunity for younger viewers because the show gets going around 9 or 10 p.m.
The best place to observe the Geminid meteor shower (or any meteor shower for that matter), is somewhere dark, away from light pollution, and with the moon out of the field of vision. The less light visible, the more brilliant the meteor shower will be.