Published: Tue, December 12, 2017
Research | By Clarence Powell

Geminid Meteor Shower 2017 - best places to watch the extravaganza in India!

Geminid Meteor Shower 2017 - best places to watch the extravaganza in India!

NASA estimates up to 120 meteors per hour could be seen streaking across all parts of the sky. Moreover, this unusual object is the parent of the annual Geminid meteor shower, which is also coming this week. In the southern hemisphere, you will have a subdued but still lovely show because Gemini doesn't rise very high above the local horizon.

The meteor shower will be visible from all over the country, but observation points not affected by lighting from buildings are recommended for the best possible viewing conditions.

When space rocks known as meteoroids-often no bigger than grains of sand-collide with Earth's atmosphere, they burn up on their fall and create tails that look like bright streaks.

Notably, the Geminids are also one of two meteor showers that come from what is believed to be an asteroid. Frank Schomp captured a meteor streaking across the night sky on December 2, 2017. "The darker the night sky, the better", he added.

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Like the supermoon, you can watch the meteor shower sans special glasses or a telescope.

Meteor showers occur when the Earth ploughs through clouds of cometary dust. The Gemini meteor shower is present in the constellation Gemini. Then, give your eyes some time to adjust to the dark and start scanning the skies. 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. "When you see a meteor, attempt to trace it backwards", said Cooke. First observed in 1862, the Geminid meteor shower takes places every year during December, and is one of the most stunning things to witness towards the end of a year.

Over time it has become more intense, with up to 20 comets per hour reported in the 1920s, rising to 50 in the 1930s, 60 in the 1940s and 80 in the 1970s.

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