Geminids 2010

Here's the place for any sights you wish to remark on

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Melanie
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Post by Melanie »

wow great explanation thank you. Marvelous picture too, that's made it a lot clearer, crikey so much to learn.

thank you
Hampshire Astronomer
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Post by Hampshire Astronomer »

I had about three Ursids tonight (13th December 2010) as well.....are they due for a particularly active session this time around?
David Scanlan

Director SPA Variable Star section

http://www.popastro.com/variablestar/index.php
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Post by Hampshire Astronomer »

Managed one and half hour watch on 13th December....clouds rolled in at 22.00 :-(

Heres my results:

20.33 2.5 Geminid Ursa Major ½ sec. -
20.43 2.5 Geminid Auriga ½ sec. -
20.44 3.5 Ursid Draco - Fast & Faint
20.48 5 Ursid? Auriga - Very Fast & Faint
20.48 5 Geminid Auriga - Very Fast & Faint
21.08 -2 Sporadic Auriga 2 sec. Bright White
21.09 3.5 Geminid Ursa Major - -
21.23 3 Geminid Gemini - -
21.29 0 Geminid Gemini - Short & White
21.31 0 Geminid Orion 2 sec. Slow & White
21.35 2.5 Sporadic Lynx ½ sec. Green
21.39 1 Ursid Cam 1 sec. Bright White
21.49 -1 Geminid Draco 2 sec. White

I was lucky enough to get the meteor at 21.08 on camera....I'll upload the pic very soon
David Scanlan

Director SPA Variable Star section

http://www.popastro.com/variablestar/index.php
mike a feist
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Post by mike a feist »

by 2200UT it was overcast with fine rain here in Sussex!! maf
coldfieldboundary
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Post by coldfieldboundary »

Hi, it was clouded out here sometimes, other times it was clear. I had 3 clear breaks.

1,25 hours clear:

24 geminids, with the best ones:
- 23h07 UT: -3 Orion, with trail!
- 23h12 UT: 0 Pegasus.
- 23h33 UT: -2 Pegasus.


half an hour clear:

9 geminids plus a -1 Ursa Major 0h37


long clear break till the twilight, 2.5 hours:

105 geminids

- 4h14 : -1 Perseus, -1 head of hydra
- 4h24 : -3 ursa major, -2 head of hydra again
- 4h40 : -1 ursa major, -1 beneath ursa major
- 4h53 : -3 Auriga.
- 4h59 : 0 lynx, 0 leo.
- 5h06 : 0 Cam, 0 cepheus.
- 5h51 : -2 through Cam
- 5h56 : a low -3, right of cassiopeia.
- 6h06 : 0 ursa major


conclusion: no real fireballs seen
Thanks to the clear cold nights...
david entwistle
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Post by david entwistle »

I haven't been able to make it out observing since the weekend; here are my radio results though. The results cover the ten days from the 7th December through to the 17th December. I'll update them as time goes by.

Image

Radio meteor observations are sensitive to the specific geometry between the transmitter, the receiver and the radiant. So, we need to consider the results from a number of radio meteor observers, each using differing geometries, to make any meaningful analysis of the stream activity. There are other radio meteor observer's results available, from around the world, published on line here

Jean-Louis Rault, the IMO Radio Commission Officer, is currently investigating very low frequency radio emissions from meteors from a location close to the Pic du Midi Observatory - brave man. J-L's aerials and equipment boxes are in the foreground...

Image
David Entwistle
Naplesnut
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Post by Naplesnut »

Managed to see a few Geminids tonite as it was clear for a couple of hours here in kent. Mostly 2 or 3 mag fast from Auriga going south of Cassiopeia, but saw 2 very bright (-2 to -3) slower meteors that traversed 60deg of sky for about 1-2 sec and left a train that lasted a couple of secs. Path of these was Gemini to below Jupiter. Not bright enough to be fireballs in my view but on a par with Jupiter for brightness.
7x50 bins, 80mm f5 refractor and Coronado PST on AZ3, 127mm MCT on EQ3-2, 150mm f8 refractor on EQ6 with dual axis drives, 300mm f5 reflector on Dobsonian mount. Doing astronomy the old-fashioned way, no Go-To just eyes, charts and time.
mike a feist
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Post by mike a feist »

Re Geminids 14th. Did not do any "organised" meteor-watching but did see a few goood ones - the sky was very clear but suffering from a snotty head-cold! The best were........
(1) 2032. A random look out of the back door revealed a very bright (brighter than Betelgeuse) meteor "slowly" moving horizontally left to right above the body of Gemini.
(2) 2147. Long, slow, 25 degree long, minus-magnitude, with bluish head bigger than train seen from bedroom window.
(3) and (4) 2200 and 2210. Both bright but very short as near the radiant.
There were a number of others seen too.
On the 15th at 0257, from my bed, I noticed a short meteor dropping down towards Saturn. maf
Alastair McBeath
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Post by Alastair McBeath »

Good to know some people managed to spot the Geminids, despite our typically unhelpful British midwinter weather!

Melanie: Don't be put off! With a little observing experience, it becomes second nature back-projecting meteor paths to see if they lined up with this or that shower radiant. The apparent speed of the meteor helps too - Geminids are medium-speed, so a fast or very fast meteor won't have been a Geminid anyway. Plus meteors near their radiant are always much shorter than those further away (so it's best not to look too closely towards an active shower radiant if you're hoping to spot many meteors from that source, as very short meteors are extremely difficult to spot).

David (Scanlan): Dec 13 is a bit too early for Ursids. Recent IMO video data have tended to confirm they're not detectable much beyond the long-established activity dates of Dec 17-26. In addition, your report of Dec 13-14 mentioned one possible Ursid as "fast", another as other "very fast", which confirms they definitely can't have been Ursids, as Ursids are slow-medium speed meteors (Ursid atmospheric entry velocities are ~33 km/sec; the velocity range for Solar System meteors entering the Earth's atmosphere is ~11-72 km/sec). Visually, observers have long struggled to see much more than the odd probable Ursid an hour on nights away from the maximum anyway.

No luck for the Geminids here in NE England. Dec 11-12 started partly clear, if too hazy for meteor work (limiting magnitude just +4.5), and had firmly clouded-up soon after midnight anyway, aside from the waste-light glare reflected from the remaining snow cover. Dec 12-13 and 13-14 were cloudy, though there were a few small breaks on 13-14 towards dawn. The "best" was a clear patch overhead (so only ~75% cloud cover...) lasting nearly five minutes after 06:19 UT, across which a lone mag +1 Geminid slipped into the clouds. Not exactly successful!

All the positive UK reports so far have been from southern England on Dec 13-14, but as Mike noted, it could be quite hit & miss. Too soon to assess how the peak itself behaved. However, the early IMO reports suggest it was fairly typical for recent years.

Alastair McBeath,
Meteor Director, Society for Popular Astronomy.
Meteor homepage: http://www.popastro.com/sections/meteor.htm
E-mail: <meteor@popastro.com> (messages under 150 kB in size only, please)
Naplesnut
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Post by Naplesnut »

Sorry to be pedantic Alastair, but we are in late autumn not mid-winter altho I agree it feels like the latter :D :D :D
7x50 bins, 80mm f5 refractor and Coronado PST on AZ3, 127mm MCT on EQ3-2, 150mm f8 refractor on EQ6 with dual axis drives, 300mm f5 reflector on Dobsonian mount. Doing astronomy the old-fashioned way, no Go-To just eyes, charts and time.
stella
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Post by stella »

No, we are NOT in autumn, we are in early winter.
Winter (in the northern hemisphere) began on December 1.

Autumn is a season when sunset gets earlier from evening to
evening. At present sunsets are getting later, so it cannot be Autumn.
mike a feist
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Post by mike a feist »

Winter (in the northern hemisphere) began on December 1.
Autumn is a season when sunset gets earlier from evening to
evening. At present sunsets are getting later, so it cannot be Autumn.

According to Whitaker's 2010
Sunset times for December for London show that sunset times gets earlier and earlier until the earliest occurs at 15 51 for five days between the 10th and 15th). Thereafter it gets later ie today the 16th.

The Astronomical Seasons are based on the equinoxes and solstices and these are given (same source) for 2010 as
Spring: vernal equinox to summer solstice (starts March 20th)
Summer: summer solstice to autumn equinox (start June 21st)
Autum: autumn equinox to winter solstice (starts Sept 23rd)
Winter: winter solstice to vernal equinox (starts Dec 22nd)

It also gives, in popular parlance (northern hemisphere)
Spring: March, April,May
Summer: June, July, August
Autumn: September, October, November
Winter: December, January, February.

So it all depends on how you look at it!! maf
brian livesey
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Post by brian livesey »

Stella said that sunsets are getting later, but how come? We are still on this side of the Winter Solstice, so the days are still getting shorter, which means that the Sun's setting sooner. Innit? :?
brian
Davej
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Post by Davej »

Hi Brian,
It is a bit confusing :?
I always thought that the days got shorter up to the 21st Dec. then the Sun would start setting later each day after that. (Never really thought about it, just took it for granted). Was playing around with Starry Night a few days ago and I noticed that the sunset times were getting later each day in December.
This might be helpful.
All the best.
Dave
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joe
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Post by joe »

24 hour clocks and the Earth's non-24 hour rotation. http://earthsky.org/earth/winter-solsti ... te-sunrise
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