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Let’s have the year-end party with the most spectacular meteor shower of the year

Sat 11 Dec 2021    
| 3 min read

In 2021, the grand celestial event Geminid meteor shower will put on a fantastic show! Mark your calendars for the night of December 13, when the bright Geminids peak with over more than a meteor a minute!

The Geminids occur every year from about December 4 to 16, peaking the night of December 13 into the morning of December 14, which is the shower’s “maximum,” or time when the most meteors fall per hour. The peak of the Geminids, which is considered to be one of the most prolific meteor showers of the year, is after dark on December 13.

The shower owes its name to the constellation Gemini because the meteors seem to emerge from this constellation in the sky. Meteors should be visible across the entire sky, though from UAE, the radiant of the shower will appear 58° above your north-eastern horizon at midnight. This means you may be able to see around 120 meteors per hour, since the radiant will be high in the sky, maximizing the chance of seeing meteors.

The shower will be visible across the entire globe except for Antarctica, which gets 24 hours of sunlight per day during this part of the year.

What causes meteor showers?

Unlike most other meteor showers, the Geminids are not associated with a comet but with an asteroid: 3200 Phaethon. The asteroid takes about 1.4 years to orbit the Sun.

Geminid’s parent – 3200 Phaethon – is a “rock comet” Every year, in December, our planet Earth crosses the orbital path of an object called 3200 Phaethon, a mysterious body that is sometimes referred to as a rock comet. The debris shed by 3200 Phaethon crashes into Earth’s upper atmosphere at some 80,000 miles (130,000 km) per hour, to vaporize as colorful Geminid meteors.

The Geminid meteor shower is nearly 200 years old, according to known records — the first recorded observation was in 1833 from a riverboat on the Mississippi River — and is still going strong. In fact, it’s growing stronger. That’s because Jupiter’s gravity has tugged the stream of particles from the shower’s source ― the asteroid 3200 Phaethon ― closer to Earth over the centuries.

Astronomy-Dubai Astronomy Group

How and Where to Observe:

Dubai Astronomy Group is organizing an event on Monday 13th of Dec, 2021 Geminids Meteor Shower camp at Al Razeen Desert, Abu Dhabi, where people will amazing training of “Decoding the Night Sky” by renowned astronomer and experience the viewing of the meteor shower and other celestial bodies and deep sky objects with telescope and laser marking of stars. Also, there will be lectures, demonstrations, and Q&A sessions about stars and the universe in the open air and dark sky. 

It is a paid event and people can register themselves through –

Dubai Astronomy Group CEO, Hasan Al Hariri said that you don’t need any special equipment or a lot of skills to view a meteor shower. all you really need is a clear sky and dark sight, the following tips can help maximize your shooting star viewing experience.

Dress for the weather, and make sure you are comfortable, especially if you plan to stay out long. Bring a blanket or a comfortable chair with you.

Find a secluded viewing spot, away from the city lights. Your eyes may take 10 minutes to get used to the dark. Lie down on the ground and look up in the direction of the radiant. Use our Interactive Meteor Shower Sky Map or the table above to find the current direction of the radiant in the sky.

We wish you all a clear sky!

Source: Supplied

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