Bundle Up And Catch The Geminid Meteor Shower This Week!

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"They can be seen with the naked eye so there's no need for binoculars or a telescope, though you will need to adjust your eyes to the dark". It is within this time window that stargazers will witness a shower that boasts anywhere between 20 to 120 meteors per hour.

This year, Royal Observatory Greenwich is expecting up to 75 meteors an hour during the peak of the Geminids shower.

The Geminid maximum also coincides with a bright return of its parent asteroid, 3200 Phaethon. They will reach a peak in the early hours of tomorrow, although only parts of southern England may have clear enough skies to see the spectacle.

As all meteor showers, the Geminids are named after the constellation that appear to the eye as the source of the meteor shower.

The Geminids were first noted as a minor meteor shower back in 1862, NASA's Cooke said.

"What you'll see is streaks of light just to the right of the constellation of Orion", Stardome says.

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"Depending on the time you observe and local light pollution, counts will vary", King said. "Much of the shower will tend to come from the east as the Earth rotates into the debris train of the asteroid Phaethon". As the comet gets close to the sun, the ice melts a bit and releases tiny rocks.

It appears about three handspans above the northern horizon near Andromeda around December 15 from latitudes north of Brisbane (higher if you live in Cairns or Darwin). "Just like a normal star except that it's moving", Dr Horner said.

In 2016, the luminous glow of a full moon obscured the zippy Geminids, but this year the moon is in its crescent phase, a slender slice of light in the sky that shouldn't interrupt the show. "Although people in the city should be able to see a few".

If you miss it, don't worry.

So pack your camera, deckchair and insect repellent for a night under the stars.