One of the year’s 2 biggest meteor displays, the Geminid meteor shower, reaches its peak tonight (Dec. 13) and Friday (Dec. 14).
Is it worth stepping outside to view it? A USA Today article quotes Mark Hammergren, an astronomer at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago. “The Geminids are one of the best performers among the meteor showers of the year," he says.
The article notes that as many as 100 shooting stars an hour are possible, adding that throughout North America the display should begin after sunset local time and continue until dawn. It quotes Alan MacRobert, a senior editor at Sky & Telescope magazine: "Meteors will appear in every part of the sky."
A "false-color" image of a Geminid meteor captured in 2011. (Photo: NASA)
Need tips for viewing it? Check out a list of 10 pointers provided by Earthsky, an astronomy enthusiast website. Want to view it online? NASA will offer a live chat and streaming video Thursday night. Want more information? Check out reports from CBS, NBC and The Washington Post.
Need tips for dressing properly to keep warm and dry while viewing the show? Take a look at the REI Expert Advice article Layering Basics. A good selection of cold-weather clothing is on sale right now, too. Stay warm and have fun.