google-site-verification=0bx1QYafX4YUxAV2RLbOiDD2WzOMRAju_YMPZqdCR1E Geminids Meteor Shower 2023: View locations and peak times

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Geminids Meteor Shower 2023: View locations and peak times

Meteor shower

One of the best meteor showers of the year is set to peak this week, and experts say skywatchers should be able to enjoy around 120 meteors per hour if weather conditions are clear.

The annual Geminid meteor shower is active starting in late November, with meteor activity peaking Wednesday night into early Thursday.

According to NASA, the Geminid meteor shower is considered one of the best and most reliable meteor showers of the year. Under ideal conditions with clear skies and away from light pollution, an astronomer can see one or more meteors per minute in the night sky.

NASA says there will be less moonlight this year, which will hinder views of the colorful sky.

Geminid meteors are known as bright and fast meteors, and although most are yellow or white, some are green, red, and even blue.

"Most meteors appear colorless or white, but the Geminid meteor appears green. It's a beautiful meteor!" Bill Cook, director of the Meteor Environment Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, said earlier this month. He said this in a blog post.

Meteors can be seen anywhere in the world and are best seen at night and in the early hours before dawn. A meteor will appear from the Gemini constellation rising in the northeastern sky.

According to NASA, it’s best to view the Geminids by sitting back or lying down with your feet facing south. The best vantage point is one away from city lights and other forms of light pollution, in a spot that allows you to see as much of the sky as possible.

It’s also best to allow your eyes around 30 minutes to adjust to the dark. Meteors will start to be visible around 9 p.m. or 10 p.m. local time, but skywatchers who head out even later — between midnight and 2 a.m. — may be treated to a more impressive sky show. For people in the Northern Hemisphere, this will likely mean bundling up and preparing for chilly winter conditions.

Meteor showers occur when Earth passes through big clouds of debris left behind by comets or asteroids. As these particles hit the planet’s atmosphere, they vaporize and appear as fast-moving streaks of light across the sky.

The Geminids come from leftover debris from an asteroid called 3200 Phaethon, which takes 524 days to circle the sun. The small space rock, which measures around 3.2 miles across, was first discovered in 1983.

Though the Geminids peak this week, the meteor shower will remain active until Dec. 24, according to NASA