Monitoring of meteor activity using the reflection of the Graves radar signal with the fundongle pro+ shows a gradual increase in the daily count since start of month ( 78), up to 109 for yesterday and the maximum hourly rate has now risen to 15, also noticeable is the higher frequency of longer duration events, that could indicate fireballs such as this trace below. The peak is due on the eve of 12/13 Aug but also possible to view on 11/12th , however forecast is not good for either night !! However with the increase in activity and higher incidence of long lasting trails it might be worth having a look on the eve 10/11th as at least it is supposed to be clear!
“Although the July radiants do not individually produce strong rates, activity from the Aquarius and Capricornus regions in July and early August, as well as minor activity from other radiants, cause hourly rates to basically rise between the middle and end of July for observers in both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.” ( http://meteorshowersonline.com/july_radiants.html)
|Southern Delta Aquarids (SDA)||July 14-August 18||July 28/29|
|Alpha Lyrids||July 9-20||Jul. 14/15|
|July Phoenicids (PHE)||July 9-17||Jul. 14/15|
|Alpha Pisces Australids||July 16-August 13||Jul. 30/31|
|Sigma Capricornids||June 18-July 30||Jul. 10-20|
|Tau Capricornids||June 2?-July 29||Jul. 12/13|
|Omicron Draconids||July 6-28||Jul. 17/18|
The total number of meteors detected in July (2018) was 1824, with a mean daily rate of 59 and mean hourly rate of 2.5.
The maximum daily rate was 87 on the 26th July and the maximum hourly rate was 11, between 3-4am on the 27th and 30th.
The daily and hourly rates are shown in the first two charts below
These maxima coincide with the SDA shower and the trends over the month reflect the observation quoted at the start of this post. The trend of increasing activity towards the end of the month is borne out in the last chart below which compares the data over the last three years, the suggested trend is more pronounced in the 2016 and 2017 data than this year .
The Perseids are already with us peaking on the night of the 12/13th August, and with a new / very young moon there should be good viewing conditions as long as the clouds stay away.
No major activity in June , the June Lyrids the most active around the 15th/16th of June, the peak is distinguishable on the daily count plot. The peak activity around the 10/11th, is probably the combination of the Theta Opiuchids and Saggitariids. The rest of activity during the month a combination of the many minor showers present.
The dip in the daily rate on the 6th is due to Graves being off line between 01-05 hrs. The activity has dropped of to about 50 meteors / day towards end of month and has continued at this rate into July which is a relatively “quiet” month.
The plot is similar to the daily plot from 2017, although rates lower( this is probably dependent upon the density of the debris field the earth passes through )
I’ve listed the showers for June below as are the daily and hourly plots for June 2018 and the daily plot for June 2017.
|June Lyrids||June 10-21||Jun. 15/16|
|June Aquilids||June 2-July 2||Jun. 16/17|
|June Boötids||June 27-July 5||Jun. 28/29|
|Corvids||June 25-July 3||Jun. 27/28|
|Tau Herculids||May 19-June 19||Jun. 9/10|
|Ophiuchids||May 19-July 2||Jun. 20/21|
|Theta Ophiuchids||May 21-June 16||Jun. 10/11|
|Sagittariids||June 10-16||Jun. 10/11|
|Phi Sagittariids||June 1-July 15||Jun. 18/19|
|Chi Scorpiids||May 6-July 2||May 28-Jun. 5|
|Omega Scorpiids||May 19-July 11||Jun. 3-6|
|June Scutids||June 2-July 29||Jun. 27/28|
|Arietids||May 22-July 2||Jun. 7/8|
|Zeta Perseids||May 20-July 5||Jun. 13/14|
|Beta Taurids||June 5-July 18||Jun. 29/30|
The main shower in April is the Lyrids, but as the table below shows there are other showers present as well.
|Lyrids (LYR)||April 16-25||Apr. 22|
|Tau Draconids||March 13-April 17||Mar. 31-Apr. 2|
|Librids||March 11-May 5||Apr. 17/18|
|Delta Pavonids||March 21-April 8||Apr. 5/6|
|Pi Puppids (PPU)||April 18-25||Apr. 23/24|
|April Ursids||March 18-May 9||Apr. 19/20|
|Alpha Virginids||March 10-May 6||Apr. 7-18|
|April Virginids||April 1-16||Apr. 7/8|
|Gamma Virginids||April 5-21||Apr. 14/15|
|April Piscids||April 8-29||Apr. 20/21|
The total meteor activity detected for April was 1790.
The average daily rate was 60 and the average hourly rate 2.5
The max hrly rate was 11 during the hours of 9 & 11 on 30th April
The max dly rate was 93 on 23rd April with hourly counts of 10 during the hours of 4, 9 & 11.
Maximum activity for the Lyrids occurred during daylight as did a lot of this months activity.
The daily rate graph and hourly rate graph are listed below, the Lyrid max is marked on both, the daily rate for 2017 is also included for comparison, it would appear more meteors were detected this year. The month of May brings the Eta Aquarids over the weekend of the 5th/6th, which will be competing with a bright waning Gibbous moon.
March is not blessed with a conspicuous meteor shower but there are plenty of minor showers overlapping.
|Eta Draconids||March 22-April 8||Mar. 29-31|
|Beta Leonids||February 14-April 25||Mar. 19-21|
|Rho Leonids||February 13-March 13||Mar. 1-4|
|Leonids-Ursids||March 18-April 7||Mar. 10/11|
|Delta Mensids||March 14-21||Mar. 18/19|
|Gamma Normids (GNO)||March 11-21||Mar. 16/17|
|Eta Virginids||February 24-March 27||Mar. 18/19|
|Pi Virginids||February 13-April 8||Mar. 3-9|
|Theta Virginids||March 10-April 21||Mar. 20/21|
|March Aquarids||February ??-April ??||Mar. 15-18|
The total meteor activity recorded for the month using the fundongle pro+ on the Graves frequency was 1116, there was a daily average of 36 with an hourly average of 1.5 The maximum daily count was 60 recorded on 19th March as was the max hourly count of 13.
This peak activity coincided with the peak activity of the Beta leonids, delta mensids and eta Virginids. Other minor peaks can be identified using table above.
A post on the UK Radio Meteor discussion group on the 19th flagged up a long duration event picked up by an observer at Emsworth in Hampshire., I didn’t find any visual reports of this daytime event.
Checking my logs this event had also been recorded at Barton, although spread across two screens.
The event was also recorded in Lincoln ( note the vertical, rather than horizontal waterfall screen)
Also recorded in Loughboro’
April is now with us and as well as several minor showers there is the Lyrid shower to look forward to over the 21/22 of the month , peak 11:00 – 22:00 BST on 22nd April. Moon in its first quarter should not cause any problems and for Lunar observers the Lunar X and V are at peak visibility around 21:40 BST on sun22 April.
February is not noted for its meteor showers, only a handful of minor showers and some daytime showers.
|Aurigids||January 31-February 23||Feb. 5-10|
|Alpha Centaurids (ACE)||February 2-25||Feb. 8/9|
|Beta Centaurids||February 2-25||Feb. 8/9|
|Delta Leonids (DLE)||February 5-March 19||Feb. 22/23|
|Sigma Leonids||February 9-March 13||Feb. 25/26|
|Capricornids-Sagittariids||January 13-February 28||Jan. 30-Feb. 3|
|Chi Capricornids||January 29-February 28||Feb. 13/14|
The radar reflections using Graves, gave a total count of 1140 meteors, with an average daily count of 41 and average hourly count of 2 (1.7), the max hourly count observed was 7 and max daily count 62. The contributions to activity from the Centaurids , Leonids and Capricornids are discernible on the charts below. March is another month of no notable shower, but lots of minor showers.
The main meteor activity this month around the 3rd/4th of January with the Quadrantids peaking in the early hours of the 4th Jan. Graves decided to go off line between 09:00 and 15:00 on the 3rd Jan. ( see red block on hourly plot).
The average hourly rate during the month was 2.2, with an average daily rate of 52.3. The variations during the month are due to the combinations of minor showers during the month, these are listed in table below.
I omitted the total count for 2017 in my new year post, this was 16,727with an average daily count of 46. It will be interesting to see what Andy’s magnetic collector picks up over the year.
|Zeta Aurigids||December 11-January 21||Dec. 31/Jan. 1|
|January Boötids||January 9-18||Jan. 16-18|
|Delta Cancrids (DCA)||December 14-February 14||Jan. 17|
|Canids||January 13-30||Jan. 24/25|
|Eta Carinids||January 14-27||Jan. 21/22|
|Eta Craterids||January 11-22||Jan. 16/17|
|January Draconids||January 10-24||Jan. 13-16|
|Rho Geminids||December 28-January 28||Jan. 8/9|
|Alpha Hydrids||January 15-30||Jan. 20/21|
|Alpha Leonids||January 13-February 13||Jan. 24-31|
|Gamma Velids||January 1-17||Jan. 5-8|
New year celebrations caught by the all sky camera.
Below are the daily and hourly meteor counts for December, the peaks for the Geminids and Ursids are clearly shown. Unfortunately Graves went off line between 20:00 on 13/12/17 and 08:00 on 14/12/17. The increase in activity on 31st is beginning of Quadrantids, which will be peaking on the 3/4 Jan.
Here is a comparison with December 2016, Graves went off line last December for most of the 29th Dec.
This final plot shows the daily meteor activity throughout 2017, the major showers are marked, for more information on meteor showers go to http://meteorshowersonline.com/
Happy New Year
The beginning of the month saw some varying activity due to the Northern and southern Taurids. The Leonids around the 17/18 were preceded by higher activity on the 16th, also apparent on the comparison with 2016. Then a spike of activity on the 25th, several bright meteors were seen during the evening observing session, on the 25th, at the SPA meeting at Preston Montford in Shropshire .
I have included the meteor information to allow comparison with data. There were no indications of the fireballs reported earlier in the week along the south coast.
Next month sees the Geminids 13/14 Dec and the Ursids, 22 Dec, with the moon position and phase favourable to both, here’s hoping for clear skies.
Finally a screenshot showing the meteor detection on the zero frequency line having adjusted the offset on the funcube dongle.
|Leonids (LEO)||November 13-20||Nov. 17/18|
|Northern Taurids (NTA)||October 12-December 2||Nov. 4-7|
|Southern Taurids (STA)||September 17-November 27||Oct. 30-Nov. 7|
|Andromedids||September 25-December 6||Nov. 14/15|
|Alpha Monocerotids (AMO)||November 13-December 2||Nov. 21|
|Alpha Pegasids||October 29?-November 17?||Nov. 1-12|