Page last updated at 16:00 GMT, Sunday, 13 December 2009
Annual Geminids meteor shower set to light up night sky
Perseid meteor shower (SPL)
It is hoped Geminids will be more vivid than a recent meteor shower
Skygazers in the northern hemisphere are preparing for the high point of the annual Geminids meteor shower.
The shower is expected to be especially easy to see this year because it is nearly the new Moon, meaning there is less moonlight to obscure it.
The meteors can be seen streaking across the night sky from 2000 GMT onwards, reaching a peak after 2200.
Robert Massey, of the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, said about 100 meteors an hour would make it a “nice sight”.
In August, people in the UK were treated to the sight of the Perseid meteor shower.
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Normally, meteor showers result from dust which has been blown away from comets which have passed near the sun.
The warmth of our star melts part of the icy comet, releasing rock fragments.
The naked eye is usually best for seeing meteors, which can often streak across more than 45 degrees of the sky.
Do you intend to watch the Geminids meteor shower?
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From this webpage on BBC News site –
Christmas Meteor Shower