Radio Astronomy

November Meteors

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.

Pete Hill

Major Activity:


Duration Maximum
Leonids (LEO) November 13-20 Nov. 17/18

Moderate Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Northern Taurids (NTA) October 12-December 2 Nov. 4-7
Southern Taurids (STA) September 17-November 27 Oct. 30-Nov. 7

Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
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


October Meteors.


here are the radar meteor recordings for October, the Draconids and Orionids being the main showers of the month although hampered by poor visibility again, although the all sky camera did pick a possible Draconid on the 10th Oct ( see earlier post re:BASMO).

The results for 2016 are also included as a comparison, although rates lower, similar pattern around the Draconids and Orionids.

I have included a summary of the showers during the month to compare with the recordings.

The final image shows false readings on the radar set up, the trace is the direct signal from Graves, due to atmospheric conditions. At 46Hz above zero line, which should represent the Graves frequency, it shows that the Funcube offset is 346Hz and not 300Hz that I had been using, will adjust this for the November series.

November sees the Leonids in the early hours of the 17/18, luckily it’s a new moon, lets hope for clear skies!

Major Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Orionids (ORI) October 15-29 Oct. 21

Minor Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Arietids (Autumn) September 7-October 27 Oct. 8/9
Delta Aurigids (DAU) September 22-October 23 Oct. 6-15
Eta Cetids September 20-November 2 Oct. 1-5
October Cetids September 8?-October 30? Oct. 5/6
October Cygnids September 22-October 11 Oct. 4-9
Draconids (GIA) October 6-10 Oct. 9/10
Epsilon Geminids (EGE) October 10-27 Oct. 18/19
Northern Piscids October 5-16 Oct. 12/13

Daylight Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Sextantids September 24-October 9 Sept. 30-Oct. 4





















































Barton All Sky & Meteor Observatory (BASMO)

The Barton All Sky & Meteor Observatory (BASMO) is now operational with the addition of the All Sky camera and realignment of aerial which has started to work loose in mount. The radio section detects the reflections of the Graves Radar signal (near |Dijon) 143.05 MHz detected using the Yagi aerial( az 140 deg , inclination 20 deg) connected to a Fundongle pro+  and signal processed using SpectrumLab on laptop. The Allsky camera runs using Ispy and is set to record video if motion detected in the selected sectors. Unfortunately the All sky camera will not show the meteors detected by the radar ( usually over southern England/ channel/ France)

Images below as follows:

  1. BASMO aerial and Allsky camera
  2. BASMO attachment of camera using wickes bracket suggested by Ed
  3. BASMO Meteor detection top, allsky camera feed bottom.
  4. Radar meteor detection, long duration trace as meteor “burns” up leaving ionised trail
  5. Radar meteor detection showing Doppler shift of approx. 100Hz as meteor approaching Graves signal slows in atmosphere.
  6. BASMO  All Sky camera pointers.
  7. All sky camera and rain drops, design fault ,Ed forgot to include wiper blades!

Click on the links to show videos .

  1. Video clip showing effect of raindrops, giving false movement as security light comes on. falsemove
  2. Video clip showing Plane overhead. Plane
  3. Video clip showing Meteor trace, probably a Draconid. Meteor

September meteors


below are the daily and hourly rates for meteors this month, average daily count of 48 and av hourly count of 2. No major showers,

Next month the Orionids peaking on 21st, the activity is already at 80+ counts with the Sextantids (daylight shower) and the Eta Cetids and October Cetids all active at the start of October.


Pete Hill































September Meteors: Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
Gamma Aquarids September 1-14 Sept. 7/8
Aries-Triangulids September 12 (?) Sept. 12
Alpha Aurigids (AUR) August 25-September 6 Sept. 1/2
Eta Draconids August 28-September 23 Sept. 12/13
Gamma Piscids August 26-October 22 Sept. 23/24
Southern Piscids (SPI) August 12-October 7 Sept. 11-20

Perseids meteor shower August12/13 (Radio Observations)

A little after the event, but has taken time downloading / checking data after my eclipse chasing.















The daily rate shows a peak on the 12th August, however checking out the hourly rate shows the maximum hourly rate occurred on the 13th August at during 7 – 8 am with a max of 30 meteors. The maximum activity on each day was concentrated in the pre dawn hours.















I noticed the odd perseid in the USA but being a lot further south the radiant was a lot lower in the sky, quite close to horizon, which made life difficult when dark spots were usually surrounded by trees! With early starts each day it wasn’t feasible to wait into the early hours.

Below is data on rest of showers during August, September offers only minor showers.


Major Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Perseids (PER) July 23-August 22 Aug. 12/13

Moderate Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
Northern Iota Aquarids (NIA) August 11-September 10 Aug. 25/26
Southern Iota Aquarids (SIA) July 1-September 18 Aug. 6/7
Alpha Capricornids (CAP) July 15-September 11 Aug. 1/2
Northern Delta Aquarids (NDA) July 16-Sepember 10 Aug. 13/14
Kappa Cygnids (KCG) July 26-September 1 Aug. 18

Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
August Eridanids August 2-27 Aug. 11/12
Upsilon Pegasids July 25-August 19 Aug. 8/9
Alpha Ursa Majorids August 9-30 Aug. 13/14

Daylight Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
Gamma Leonids August 14-September 12 Aug. 25/26


Clear Skies

Pete Hill

Radio scatter of July Meteors

Here is the July meteor data based upon radar backscatter from Graves. As commented by

“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. Therefore, clear, moonless nights can be quite enjoyable for anyone observing during late July. “

there is a definite increase in activity towards end of month, where we are also entering the Perseid stream ( July 23 – Aug 22nd) and there has been a noticeable increase in fireballs picked up by NASA all sky monitors ( see

Moderate Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Southern Delta Aquarids (SDA) July 14-August 18 July 28/29

Minor Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
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


I have also combined last years daily counts with this years for comparison:

although the count rates vary, there is some mirroring of variation early in the month, but there appears to be an increase rather than decrease in activity during the latter stages of the month. Notice also the diurnal nature of activity, particularly during the second half of the month, where activity is very high during the early hours of the day ( see Hourly meteor rate) .This is a good pointer to observing the Perseids later this month, with peak activity from midnight , through the early hours of the 12-13 Aug, a waning Gibbous moon will be rising around midnight which might interfere with viewing, but it stays relatively low in the sky as the Perseid radiant climbs higher. The shower is active from July 23 till Aug 22nd with best views during the nights of the 11, 12 and 13 Aug. Definitely worth getting those all sky cameras we have made up and running to record shower activity.

clear skies


Pete H

June Meteor Data


below is the daily and hourly rates of meteor detection using Graves radar signal, no major showers this month, month started with continued high count from end of May, then varied with combination over various showers overlapping during month, possible Graves “down time ” early in the month, from morning of 2ndJune to morning 3rd June.

Moderate Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
June Lyrids June 10-21 Jun. 15/16

Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
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

Daylight Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
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

Meteor detection over April & May 2017

April: the Lyrids towards end of month were just noticeable, with varying activity from minor showers overlapping over the month.























Major Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Lyrids (LYR) April 16-25 Apr. 22

Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
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

Daylight Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
April Piscids April 8-29 Apr. 20/21



May started with a continuation of the lower activity detected at end of April, before the marked increase due to the Eta Aquarids, there was a noticeable increase in activity over the rest of the month with activity from minor showers overlapping and the activity of the day time showers showing up prominently on the hourly recording, greater activity before midday on most days.























Major Activity:

Radiant Duration Maximum
Eta Aquarids (ETA) April 21-May 12 May 5/6


Minor Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
Epsilon Aquilids May 4-27 May17/18
May Librids May 1-9 May 6/7
Eta Lyrids May 3-12 May 8-10
Northern May Ophiuchids April 8-June 16 May 18/19
Southern May Ophiuchids April 21-June 4 May 13-18


Daylight Activity

Radiant Duration Maximum
Epsilon Arietids April 25-May 27 May 9/10
May Arietids May 4-June 6 May 16/17
Omicron Cetids May 7-June 9 May 14-25
May Piscids May 4-27 May 12/13

It will be interesting to see if any of the radar detections can be matched visually once I’ve got the all sky camera up and running, I will be running Dimension4 to synchronise times on both machines, enabling a match to be made to visual and radar sightings.

Look out for the June Lyrids 15-16 June, although just after full moon and the nights will be a lot shorter.