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Geminid Meteor Shower: Treat For Stargazers
Dozens of shooting stars have been burning up in the Earth's atmosphere in the annual Geminid meteor shower.
Stargazers say the display - which peaked overnight - is one of the best this year and will continue until Monday.
Some people on Twitter reported seeing one meteor every minute and the shower was described as "perfect" and "phenomenal".
But others complained that it was too cloudy to see anything.
Robert Massey from the Royal Astronomical Society told Sky News that in suburban London he saw eight in 15 minutes which was "not bad at all".
He said considering he was watching from a light polluted area it was "fairly positive" and would have been even better with fewer lights around.
He also said even though the shower will continue over the weekend it may not be as good visually as the Moon will be further away.
On Twitter, HeineKing13 said: "Meteor shower is awesome. 26 falling stars in 20 minutes. Awesome!", while Organic4Kendall said it was "definitely perfect".
PryorFrancis wrote: "Geminid meteor shower was fabulous at 4am in dark Fenland skies. Good again tonight and no clouds forecast. Look north."
Dlelacru said: "This meteor shower is phenomenal!"
And Accordingtoxen said: "I've seen at least 30 large meteors and 2 dozen smaller streaks so far. The rate of the #Geminid #Meteor shower is intensifying."
But Njp_myworld said: "Cloudy yet again on one of the best meteor shower nights of the year."
While most meteor showers come from comets, Geminids is different because the 'parent' is an asteroid called 3200 Phaethon.
"Of all the debris streams Earth passes through every year, the Geminids' is by far the most massive," said Nasa astronomer Bill Cooke.
The Geminid shower takes its name from the Gemini constellation, from where it is thought to originate.
The shower lasts from December 12-16 but the Moon was expected to make viewing tricky at times because it is in its waxing phase, a few days before being full.
Getting away from the artificial light of towns and cities will give skywatchers a better chance.
A meteor - also referred to as a shooting star - is the streak of light caused when a meteoroid fragment enters the atmosphere and burns up.
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