Kolkata Sky Gazers To Observe Meteor Shower On Dec 13


Kolkata: It’s the time for Sky gazers. Sky gazers can enjoy the meteor shower display after 10 p.m. IST of December 13 till the early hours the next day. Sky gazers in Kolkata and elsewhere in the country can watch a meteor shower display from tomorrow night till the early hours of December 14, if clouds and light pollution do not play spoilsport.

Dr. Debiprosad Duari, Director, M. P. Birla Planetarium, Kolkata explains meteors and the Geminid meteor shower. Geminid meteor shower is so named because the meteors appear to originate from the constellation of Gemini in the night sky. It is not a comet but an unusual asteroid called 3200 Phaethon, discovered in 1983, that is the origin of the meteors.

Generally the meteor shower associated with 3200 Phaethon peaks around second week of December every year and are quite numerous. Sky watchers should go to an open space and keep an eye on the sky and binoculars or telescopes will not be required to watch the celestial display, Mr Duari said.

“This year the Geminid meteor shower is predicted to peak on the night of December 13 and the early morning of December 14. The shower will start at around 10 pm on December 13 when the Gemini constellation will be visible in the north-eastern sky, a little above and right of the familiar Orion constellation,” Mr Duari said.

The shower is predicted to be at its maximum at around 2 am on December 14, when the Gemini constellation will be almost overhead and the number of meteors can reach up to 120 per hour, he said.