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Meteor shower dazzles in night sky

Dec. 14, 2012 at 4:58 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Clear skies and lack of moonlight created perfect viewing conditions for a meteor shower some observers in the U.S. Northeast called the best they'd ever seen.

The annual Geminid meteor shower provided a celestial spectacle Thursday night through early Friday morning, The Washington Post reported.

Tweets by observers in the Washington area spoke of an "amazing" sight.

"Just saw a huge one streak over downtown Bethesda heading north. Amazingness!" @MC_DC tweeted.

"In Clifton VA, saw 9 in 20 minutes ... most of them were nice and bright!" Daniel Koklauner said.

The Geminid shower occurs every December, caused by an asteroid dubbed 3200 Phaethon.

Geminid meteors were first observed in 1862 and constitute one of only two major showers originating from an asteroid or minor planet rather than a comet.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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