Before getting geared up to welcome the New Year, here is another chance to view another spectacular meteor shower. Yes, the Geminid meteor showers are coming to the night sky this Wednesday to blow your mind. The skywatchers are having a great 2017 as far as cosmic events in the sky are concerned. Recently they witnessed the Supermoon and before that the splendid Leonid meteor showers and many more. So, if anybody has not seen or been a part of these rare, magnificent meteor shower, then there is no need to worry. They have now another final chance to view the last meteor shower of the year, The Geminids.
This time, the Geminid meteor showers are going to be in full swing and are going to be a very big event because the sky will be darker. Last year the Geminids were dominated by the bright supermoon but this year’s the sky is going to be very dark and clear because of thin, waning crescent moon. Most of the times it is seen that the brightness of moon makes the big show of shooting stars look fainted. Bu this time, the Geminid meteors showers are not going to be hampered or washed out by the moon, and the sky enthusiasts are going to have an unforgettable experience watching the Geminids. Bill Cooke from NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office said, With August’s Perseids obscured by bright moonlight, the Geminids will be the best shower this year. The thin, waning crescent Moon won’t spoil the show.
Geminids come under those rare showers that generate visible meteors all throughout the night. According to the latest reports, the Geminids will be at their peak on December 13 from the late evening to Early morning. NASA said that between midnight and 4 a.m. local time, people can witness a lot of meteors dazzling in the night sky. Normally, the Geminid meteor showers are one the brightest in the sky and in recent years, they have become bigger with maximum rates of 60 to 120 meteors per hour for a single observer under ideal dark-sky conditions.
As per the scientists, the visibilities of the meteors are affected mainly by two reasons. One is due to light pollution, and other is due to the tall buildings and trees. So, to get a clearer and more enhanced view of the meteors, one has to make sure that wide range of the sky is visible in front of him/her. Also, before watching the Geminids, you should not watch any light source, and you should have to concentrate on the dark night sky. American meteor society has advised people to go to a rural or remote location with minimal light pollution to see the Geminids. It also informed the viewers with cloudless skies in mid-northern latitudes could be expected to witness around 100 or more meteors between 1 a.m. to 2 a.m.
Geminid meteors or shooting stars are said to be coming out from a point near the bright star Castorin, present in the constellation Gemini. This time The Geminid’s source will be consisting of cosmic dust and debris from an unusual rocky object called 3200 Phaethon. So get ready to witness this year’s most splendid and bright Geminid meteor showers which will be at their peak on December 13’s chilly winter midnight.