The Geminids are one of the most reliable and spectacular meteor showers of 2012, and viewing conditions are near perfect for Hawaii. After the somewhat disappointing 2011 Geminids meteor shower, 2012 is a great year to see the Geminids shooting stars from Hawaii (and all over the world). If you plan to watch only one meteor shower in 2012, make it the Geminids.
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The new moon (December 12th on 22:42 Hawaiian time) makes that the night sky is very dark, and the very broad peak (about one day) of the Geminids happens for Hawaii during the daylight hours of December 13th. This makes the hours between midnight and early dawn on the night of December 12-13 the best time to watch the 2012 Geminids from Hawaii. During these nights under perfect viewing conditions you should be able to see 100+ shooting stars / hour. (more information after this image)
You can also see this meteor shower a few nights before and after December 13th, but don’t expect to see as much as during the peak. Best viewing time is between 2 and 3 am. Check out our stargazing guide and meteor shower guide for best viewing results.
Geminids 2012 viewing tips for Hawaii
The best time to see the geminids in 2012 is between 2 and 3 am on the nights of 12-13 and 13-14 December. Under ideal viewing conditions you should be able to see up to 120 shooting stars / hour from Hawaii. You can read about the best viewing practices in our meteor shower guide.
In December, the constellation Gemini rises around 20:00 pm in the east. It is directly overhead around 2 am, and moves towards the western horizon at sunset. The geminids are active between December 4 and 17, and you can see shooting stars during all these nights. However, you will see most shooting stars in the early morning hours of the nights around December 13th.
|December 12||06:19||17:38||0.3%||New Moon at 22:42|
|December 13||07:23||18:48||0.6%||Geminids peak at 13:30|
How to find the Geminids from Hawaii?
The radiant of the Geminids lies in the constellation Gemini. During the peak of this 2012 meteor shower on Hawaii, Gemini rises around 8 pm in the East, is directly overhead around 2 am, and stands above the eastern horizon at daybreak.
You can find Gemini easily with the help of these sky maps. Jupiter and Orion are both close to the Geminids. Orion is easily recognized by its ‘belt’, the 3 stars that are aligned. On one side of Orion’s belt you can find Jupiter, one of the brightest points on the sky. On the other side of Orion’s belt you can find Sirius, the brightest star in the sky.
Draw a line through Jupiter, Sirius and Orion’s belt, and look for a reddish star close to Orion. This is Betelgeuze, a red supergiant. You can find the radiant of the geminids, and most shooting stars, on this side of the line.
Below we show 3 sky maps of the 2012 mid-December night sky at 9 pm, 2 am and 5 am.
Sky map for Hawaii: December 12th 9pm
This is what the sky above Hawaii will look like at 09:00 pm on December 12th 2012. This map is also relevant for the ±5 nights before and after December 12th.
Sky map for Hawaii: December 13th 2am
This is what the sky above Hawaii will look like at 02:00 am on December 13th 2012. This map is also relevant for the ±5 nights before and after December 13th.
Sky map for Hawaii: December 13th 5am
This is what the sky above Hawaii will look like at 05:00 am on December 13th 2012. This map is also relevant for the ±5 nights before and after December 13th.
These sky maps have been made with stellarium.