Month: November 2016

Nov 26/27 2016 meteor observations from Matanzas Inlet, Florida

Greetings again all,        Catching up on two recent pre-dawn meteor observing sessions: one yesterday morning with fellow ACACer Brenda Branchett at the Branchett home in Deltona, Florida and the other this morning from a windy Matanzas Inlet.       Brenda and I managed a brief watch from her and Dave’s back yard yesterday morning (Nov 25/26, 2016) seeing some nice late Leonids and a few others in between patches of cirrus cutting across our field of view.  I got in 1 1/2 hours observing time and totaled 12 meteors that featured three nice Leonids and Brenda got in one hour with 2 Leonids, 2 Taurids and 3 sporadics.  It’s always great to get a chance to co-observe with another “meteorphile” from time to time.      This morning, I was out once again at trusty Matanzas Inlet under less than perfect conditions with an 18 mile per hour NE wind blowing, but lovely dark and clear skies as always.  I had 36 meteors total in a very busy 1 3/4 hours before the winds drove me away…;o).  I found myself tracking seven different radiant sources scattered out all over the sky from horizon to horizon!  Here’s my data from this morning’s session: Observed for radiant: LEO: Leonids NTA: North Taurids NOO: November Orionids PSC: psi Cassiopeids HYD: sigma Hydrids PUP: Puppids-Velids PSU: psi Ursa Majorids SPO: sporadics Date: Nov. 26/27, 2016, Observer:...

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Spectacular Fireball 28 November 2016

The Danish Camera Network captured a spectacular fireball over Southern Sweden on 2016 November 28 at 18h25m26s UT. It started as low as 64 km and ended at 32 km with a very low speed of 15 km/s. The radiant was located at R.A. 290.5° and decl. -26.8°. For more information see:...

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Meteor activity from 2001XQ on 2-3 December 2016?

Call for observations The minor shower 66 Draconid (541 SDD) which was discovered by the Croatian Meteor Network (Šegon et al., 2014) has a mean orbit based on 43 meteors, similar to the orbit of 2001 XD. The asteroid 2001 XD has an orbit typical for Jupiter family comets and therefore may be a dormant comet. The shower activity ranges from November 23 until December 21. According to Jérémie Vaubaillon there is a reasonable good encounter factor (0.67, see for more information the recent paper Vaubaillon, 2016) indicating a possible enhanced activity on December 2 (~21h30m UT) and December 3 (~7h UT), from a radiant at RA = 310° and decl. = +64°. These meteors are very slow moving with an entrance velocity of 21 km/s. All meteor observers are encouraged to pay attention to any possible meteors from this source, although no outburst or any anything spectacular has to be expected. The orbital data are: Source: 541 SDD 2001 XQ S.L. 255.2 RA 302 Decl. 62 Vg 18.2 km/s q 0.981 1.035 e 0.657 0.716 ω 184.8 190.1 Ω 255.2 251.4 I 27.2 29 References Šegon D., Gural P., Andreić Ž., Skokić I., Korlević K., Vida D. and Novoselnik F. (2014). “New showers from parent body search across several video meteor databases”. WGN, 42, 57-64. Vaubaillon J. (2016). “A (revised) confidence index for the forecasting of meteor showers”....

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Nov 21/22 2016 meteor observations from Matanzas Inlet, Florida – FIREBALL!!!

Greetings again all,       It truly amazes me how fast a normal, mundane meteor watch can turn into a memory for a lifetime, but it sure did for a very lucky yours truly last night/this morning from the glittering skies of trusty Matanzas Inlet (MI)!  I was there to check out an obscure and little known minor shower called the Alpha Monocerotids (AMO).  I didn’t see even one AMO in the two hours I was out there, but what I did see kept me far, far away from the Complaint Department…;o).       I got there a bit before 11:00 p.m. to take advantage of the final two hours of dark skies before the waning crescent moon rose a bit before 1:00 a.m.  I had been there about 20 minutes when at 11:18 p.m. EST, suddenly all of MI was lit up by a flash of intense orange light!  I caught the source of the flash out of the corner of my eye and turned my head just in time to see the terminal burst of a stunning North Taurid (NTA) fireball fall into the southwest horizon in a shower of sparks!  I estimate it was at least -8 in magnitude, perhaps even brighter!  The initial flash was the brightest and it was slightly brighter than the terminal burst, but both flashes were magnificent and deep tangerine orange in color.       ...

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Stunning fireball on 18 Nov. 2016 (at 22:31 UT)

This amazing fireball overflew the Mediterranean Sea on 18 Nov. 2016 at 22:31 UT (23:31 local time). The event was produced by a meteoroid that hit the atmosphere at about 72000 km/h. The bolide began at an altitude of about 80 km above the sea level and ended at a height of around 60 km above the sea. The fireball was recorded in the framework of the SMART Project from the astronomical observatories of Calar Alto (Almería, Spain) and La Sagra (Granada,...

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