You should start to see the Geminid meteors appear, their rate will increase hitting their peak at around or around 100 per hour around 2am Thought this number is reflective only of someone watching from the flawless position under totally cloudless skies. This year the source of the Geminids, asteroid 3200 Phaethon, will also be visible during the meteor shower. The debris swim into our planet's atmosphere and become what we call the 'shooting stars'. Viewers in dark areas could get up to 120 every hour, while those near lights of small cities will see about 50 per hour.
The cool meteor sighting occurred just a night before the Geminids peaked on the night of December 13 (the morning of December 14). The comet will pass very close to Earth around 8 a.m. EST this Sunday, according to Space.com and should be visible to the naked eye.
To experience the celestial show, you do not need to have a telescope or binoculars. Allow 20 minutes for your eyes to adjust and try to avoid looking at a phone. According to Rodgers, the Geminids appear to radiate out of one point out of the constellation Gemini (hence the name Geminids). Given their medium speeds, you'll be able to view one to two meteors per minute in the night sky.
Wichita is in a pretty good spot to view the meteor shower, provided some forecasted light cloud coverage Thursday evening subsides.
Geminid meteor shower image taken in 2011. Image NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office
Meanwhile, the Geminids meteor shower will consist of multi-coloured shooting stars visible from the ground on Thursday and Friday. The National Weather Service forecast calls for mostly clear skies with a slight southern breeze. But nowadays, almost 120 meteors can be seen across the sky at the peak.
In addition, you are advised not to turn on even your smartphone's lights.
In the United Kingdom, the best time to see them will be between midnight and dawn on 14 December, but you can start looking any time after sunset. Residents from this area just need to find the Orion constellation and then look at its upper left where the Gemini is.
"Virtually all meteors that we see during meteor showers come from comet dust as the Earth crosses the plane of their orbits", said Suresh Sreenivasan, a board member of the Minnesota Astronomical Society.
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