The Geminid meteor shower will grace skies tonight as hundreds of bright meteors fly from rock asteroid 3200 Phaethon. This video shows you the meteors that shot across the skies in Daytona Beach, Florida.
The moon won't be outshining many of them, setting at about 10:30 Thursday night and 11:30 Friday. But unlike most meteor showers, which originate from icy comets, the Geminids stem from the mysterious rocky object 3200 Phaethon. Those looking to observe the astronomical phenomenon should head outside to places with minimal light pollution.
The best view of the comet and the meteor shower is likely the central part of the United States. If you're planning to go outside and watch, factor in a window of about 30 minutes for your eyes to adjust to the darkness.
This happens when the Earth passes via a massive trail of dusty debris shed by Phaethon 3200, an asteroid. As Earth traverses through the area every year in mid-December, the particles collide with the outer atmosphere and burn, transforming into gorgeous "shooting stars". This shower is called "Geminid" because it is named after the constellation 'Gemini'which is where the meteors seem to emerge, it is believed.
Using Orion's belt as a reference point, Mrs O'Connor said to look to the left for a red star, from which the Gemini constellation is located directly below. After midnight, Gemini will have moved into the west-southwestern skies.
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If you can't get out of the city or have no way of securing an unobstructed view of the Geminid meteor shower don't fret Slooh has your back.
The attractive Aurora Borealis photobombed by the Geminids shower! Berkeley's city lights coupled with a waxing crescent moon will mask some of the fainter meteors, but visibility is expected to improve after 11 p.m. when the moon sets.
You should got to the roof if you want to catch a better glimpse of the cosmic show.
The Lawrence Hall of Science's outdoor area will remain open to the public all night. You will soon start to see Geminid meteors.