Geminid meteor shower arrives overnight

Geminid meteor shower arrives overnight

The summer Perseids-which the American Meteor Society calls "the most popular meteor shower"-may be better known, and are arguably the closest contender to the Geminids". While most meteor showers originate from comet remnants, the Geminids are a result of remnants from an asteroid interacting with the Earth's atmosphere. NASA suggests that any night you head out to catch a meteor shower, that you get away from light pollution, so if you're in a city head to the suburbs. And this year, they're predicted to yield about 120 meteors per hour.

The Geminid meteor shower is going to be the most powerful shooting stars of 2017 crowns in the night of December 13-14. A helpful tip from Sky and Telescope Magazine: you don't need to focus on, or even find, the radiant of a meteor shower in order to see them. They also suggest to give your eyes about 20 minutes to adapt to the dark for optimal viewing.

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The meteor fell Dec. 2, shortly after 3 a.m., which the department said was an early arrival of the "Geminid" meteor shower, which is scheduled to peak Dec. 13 to Dec. 14. The meteors will look like they're coming from all over the sky, so try to get as wide a view as possible and look straight up.

The observatory at the Telus World of Science will be open for people wishing to view the Geminid shower on Wednesday and Thursday from 7 p.m.to 10 p.m., weather permitting.

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Meteors should appear all over the sky, though not all will belong to the Geminid shower. The dirt and grit burn up when they run into Earth's environment in a flurry of "shooting stars". "By the Sun's radiation, the ice melts and the dust and rocks are left behind along the orbit of the comet". This year the astronomers will have the opportunity to analyse Phaethon closely in mid-December as it will make its nearest pass by Earth since it was found.

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