The next meteor shower is the Geminid meteor shower. Its parent object – mysterious 3200 Phaethon – might be a “rock comet.”
The next meteor shower – and last major meteor shower of 2012 – will be the Geminid shower of December. In 2012, this shower peaks late at night on December 13 until early in the morning December 14. But the nights before and after should be good, too. The Geminids have been great in recent years. Some predictions are going as high as 100 meteors per hour for this shower! The moon is out of the way for this year’s Geminid meteor shower. All in all, it’s an awesome year to watch the Geminids. What’s more, astronomers are beginning to talk about the Geminids’ parent object in a whole new way. This object, called 3200 Phaethon, has had astronomers stumped for years because – although comets are known to spawn all the other annual meteor showers – this object looks like an asteroid. Now astronomers are thinking 3200 Phaethon might a member of a whole new category of objects, which they’re calling rock comets. If so, you might say the Geminid meteor shower is a rock comet meteor shower. The video below explains more.