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First meteor shower of 2019 will light up the skies TONIGHT

PUBLISHED: 17:46 03 January 2019 | UPDATED: 17:46 03 January 2019

The Quadrantid meteor shower will peak at around 2am. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Quadrantid meteor shower will peak at around 2am. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

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Here's everything you need to know about the first meteor shower of the year.

Signs of the Quadrantid meteor shower began in the tail end of December, but the event peaks in early January.

Meteor showers usually occur when particles of comet debris enter our atmosphere and burn up, appearing as shooting stars. The Quadrantid shower, however, is a product of an asteroid.

This year the spectacle of the Quadrantid shower will be most visible from late tonight (January 3) until dawn on Friday, January 4 – with the peak of the display set to occur around 2am.

While the peak of the shower won’t be until the early hours, there’s a good chance you’ll see shooting stars during the later part of the evening so you won’t have to stay up too late to catch a glimpse.

It will be visible to the naked eye so there is no need for any equipment, just let your eyes adjust to the dark and look out for fast and bright meteors with fine trains.

Because the Quadrantid shower coincides with a fairly dim moon this year, the visibility should be especially good. For the best views find a safe location that is away from sources of light pollution such as street lights and where you can scan the whole sky.

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