Sunday, 20 January, 2019


Google dedicates Doodle to Geminids meteor shower which would peak today

Google dedicates Doodle to Geminids meteor shower which would peak today Google dedicates Doodle to Geminids meteor shower which would peak today
Kristine Garrett | 14 December, 2018, 09:47

MORE DETAILS: This has the potential to be the best meteor shower of the year!

You'll be able to easily watch the Geminid meteor shower from India provided you have access to a clear, dark night sky.

Between 60 and 120 meteors per hour shoot across the sky every year in the shower, and this year it's set to get the closest its been to earth in the last 50 years, astronomy experts have said.

Tonight they will be visible from 9pm but will reach their peak at 2am. However, they can appear nearly anywhere in the night sky, and often appear yellowish in hue. Schmit will teach you to navigate through the night sky.

Those who do plan to go outside to try and see the meteors should be sure to bundle up if it's cold where they are and should give their eyes at least half an hour to adjust to the dark before the peak of the show around 2 a.m.

Next year 's meteor display won't be accompanied by such visible conditions as there will be a full moon out. The peak is the 13th/14th December but you might see "shooting stars" on other evenings. The Geminids Meteor Shower is finally here and shall grace the skies tonight!

Although the Geminid shower is known for its "shooting stars", the number of meteors visible depends on the time and how dark it is.

One of the best meteor showers of the year, the Geminids occur when Earth passes through the debris path of asteroid 3200 Phaethon. By 2 a.m. on Friday the constellation Gemini will be nearly directly overhead and predictions are for as many as 60-120 meteors per hour!

The meteor shower was first spotted from a MS riverboat in 1833 but has been growing stronger and brighter in the almost 200 years since, as Jupiter's gravity keeps pulling the stream of particles closer and closer to Earth.

The meteors move at a speed of 22 miles per second and burn up at about 24 miles above the Earth.

The Geminids are unusual in that they are not shed by a classic icy comet but a body that shares characteristics of both comets and asteroids.

The Met Office says, 'The best time to view the Geminids is between sunset, local time and before sunrise.

The streaks you'll see are actually debris soaring behind the rocky object 3200 Phaethon, which circles the sun every 1.4 years.

The best time to watch will be after midnight, once the moon has set.

As the night will be chilly one, with Berkeley expecting to reach a low of 49 degrees, meteor watchers are encouraged to dress accordingly.

A celestial fireworks show is brewing in the Wichita skies this week.

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