How To Watch The Geminid Meteor Shower

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The skies will light up Sunday night for one of the biggest meteor showers of the year.

The Geminid Meteor Shower will send up to 100 meteors per hour.

The meteor shower can be viewed in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Because the pieces are from an asteroid, the meteoroids are able to penetrate deeper into the earth’s atmosphere, making them visible to the naked eye for a few seconds.

According to NASA, Geminids are pieces of debris from 3200 Pantheon, an extinct comet once thought to be an asteroid. Of all of the debris systems Earth passes through each year, this shower is the most massive, outweighing other streams by factors of 5 to 500.

Geminids received their name because they radiate from the constellation of Gemini, according to NASA. The meteoroids hit Earth’s atmosphere traveling 78,000 mph, which, compared to other meteor showers, is actually slow.

The annual shower lasts for a few weeks but peaks between midnight and dawn on Dec. 14.

It doesn’t take any special equipment to see the shower, just go to darker areas away from city lights and look up.