RIT Observatory Invites Stargazers to Geminid Meteor Shower, Dec. 13

The event is free and open to the public

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NASA/MSFC/B. Cooke, NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office

False-color composite view of 2008 Geminid meteor shower.

The Rochester Institute of Technology Observatory will hold an open house during the Geminid meteor shower this month.

The RIT Observatory invites the public from 7:30 to 10 p.m. Dec. 13 to its facility at 645 John St., near the intersection with Bailey Road.

“This night marks the peak of the Geminid meteor shower,” says Michael Richmond, professor in RIT’s School of Physics and Astronomy and director of the RIT Observatory. “The best viewing will occur after midnight, but we may see five to 10 meteors each hour even in the early evening.

“Our telescopes will focus on Jupiter and its moons, but we will also watch the fast-moving asteroid Toutatis as it zips through the sky, faster than a speeding bullet.”

Poor weather could postpone the event until Saturday, Dec. 15. Check the observatory webpage for status updates at www.rit.edu/cos/observatory.