Published: Fri, December 14, 2018
Science | By Michele Flores

Howard County officer catches meteor shower on dash cam

Howard County officer catches meteor shower on dash cam

The Geminids are also unique in that they don't originate from comets, as most meteor showers do.

The Geminid meteor shower will peak from midnight until daybreak on 13 and 14 December.

"The meteor shower is visible the whole day but the actual visibility starts from the night and continues throughout". This is when they will be high in the sky.

In ideal conditions, you will be able to see up to 120 shooting stars an hour.

The Geminid meteor shower peaks over the northern hemisphere tonight, providing a dazzling display of celestial wonder.

The robotic telescope service will once again be providing an HD stream of the annual meteor shower with the aid of partner observatories.

Even if you can't stay up that late, the chance to spot meteor showers are pretty good starting around 10 p.m. Gazers will want to get away from any city lights to somewhere dark, face south and look way up in the sky, but not quite overhead.

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Go outside at night at midnight on December 13-14 and look up, and keep looking, and if there's a clear, dark sky, you will be rewarded with some awesome festive fireballs. "As the night progresses, the Geminid rate will increase, hitting a theoretical maximum of about 100 per hour around 2 a.m".

"Although the meteors will appear to have Gemini as their point of origin, they can appear anywhere in the night sky".

The 3200 Phaethon orbits the Earth every 1.4 years and comes ever-so-close to earth, at about 150 million kilometres, and that's what makes this light show one of the most spectacular. But they actually are thought to come from 3200 Phaethon, a space rock that shares characteristics similar to both a comet and an asteroid.

There is no need for any special equipment to view the Geminid meteor shower.

The American Meteor Society recommends turning the back to the bright moon and letting eyes adjust to darkness to see the meteors that may be more faint.

Travelling at some 22 miles per second, the meteors burn up about 24 miles above the Earth. Around 75 meteors could be seen per hour at the height of the show and if the skies are clear it's quite a reliable show. It all depends where you watch it from, but it promises to be a decent show in 2019 thanks to a lack of moonlight. columnist Joe Rao agreed, citing in his column the nice timing of this year's Geminids: the crescent moon will set around 10:30 p.m. local time and will not interfere with any brilliant meteors.

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