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Geminid Meteor Shower To Light Up Weekend Sky

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(Photo by J.Burkett, CBSDFW.com)

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NORTH TEXAS (CBS NEWS) – If the skies are clear this weekend, you’ll have to bundle up and venture outside for a chance to view one of the best meteor showers of the year – the Geminid meteor shower.

More than 100 meteors are expected to rocket across the sky on Friday night Dec. 13th and early morning hours of the 14th. It will be visible from almost any point on Earth.

Unfortunately, just like the Leonid meteor shower in November –  this year’s show also occurs when we’re close to a full moon, which means the sky my be too bright to see a lot of the meteors.

Friday night after sunset will be the earliest instance to see the heavenly streakers, but the best time for the show is during the early morning hours, between Midnight and 3:00 a.m. Saturday morning.

The most intense meteor shower of the year, the Geminid features between 100 and 120 meteors per hour at its peak, traveling about 78,000 miles per hour. The full shower lasts from Dec. 12-16.

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According to NASA:  The source of the December Geminid shower is an asteroid called 3200 Phaethon, which is trailed by a cloud of dust. Bits of dust traveling 80,000 miles per hour hit our atmosphere and turn into glowing meteor. The meteor display is known as the Geminid meteor shower because it appears to radiate from near the star Castor in the constellation Gemini.

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