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(meteorobs) Re: Aug 12/13 no Perseids in SW Florida



My luck ran out.  Skies were 100% cloudy wiht mostly cirrus all day
yesterday and it didn't semi-clear until after midnight.  Then I was left
with dense haze and a limit of 2.0, in spots 3.0 with difficulty.  Pierre's
description explains why I saw no meteors at all despite 25 minutes of
casual watching from the front yard.  Around 340 AM after seeing nothing
despite having Jupiter and Saturn plainly visible, I decided to can it for
the night.  Joan went to bed with all her clothes on, waiting for me to get
her up when it cleared.  Maximum should have been over Asia by my reckoning.
I saw the peak here in 1997 with rates as high as 68/hour ; that is not a
normal year for me.  Europe gets it next year, then my turn comes in 2001
but with a LQ moon.  I don't expect to see a good Perseid show again until
2005, with a North American maximum and FQ moon.

As a recap, my best Perseid years have been 1969, 1977-78, 1981, 1988-89,
1997.  The movement of the peak is clearly evident.  1973 was a day before
full moon with no unusual numbers present despite the bright sky ; but 1974
reached 40/hr with a thick waning crescent moon as the peak was just getting
started.  1985 had a sputtering peak with long dry spells, so it netted out
as only slightly better than normal.  1993 was an off-year here with the
maximum shifted to Europe.   In the years away from the peak, I used to see
about 40/hour consistently before 1990.  Since then I have been seeing only
mid-20's rates.  Something has changed to the downside.

At mid-morning the haze is still here, looks like northern pollution that
has circulated into Florida.  Might not be any more Perseid observing for
this year.

Norman

Norman W. McLeod III
Asst Visual Program Coordinator
American Meteor Society

Fort Myers, Florida
nmcleod@peganet.com

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