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Re: (meteorobs) Sept 5/6 Meteor Observations From California



Bob Lunsford wrote:
> I watched under a gloriously dark sky this morning for 3 hours. There
> was a thick blanket of fog shrouding San Diego. The Milky Way could be
> followed to within 10 degrees of the western horizon which is rare for 
> here. I had totally forgotten about the moon until I saw a glow near the 
> top of a distant hill in the northeast. The thin crescent moon was not
> nearly as much a bother as last week's moonlight.

It was a reasonable night from Mauna Kea.  The downside was that the
visitors center was open late, and they switched on the LPS streetlights
when I wanted to start.  So I lost one 30-minute watch.  There was also
thin barely-moving patchy cirrus, so the LM varied from +7.35 to +7.0.
Jupiter had a halo for much of the night.  A fair wind prevented any
dewing, but I had some cold extremities by dawn.

Still managed 3.91 hours Teff and 68 meteors.  Most were +11.0--12.0.
The lack of bright meteors was a disappointment.  The best two, an +8
and a +9, came five seconds apart.  There was also a +12 short meteor
followed just over a second later by an +11.5 travelling along the same
path give or take an arcminute or two.  The second was slightly
longer.  I've not had time to analyse the content, but I think there
were some September Perseids, and possibly some beta-Cassiopeids in
there. There was one which might have been an alpha-Triangulid.  I did
see a nice +2 September Perseid between telescopic watches.

Unlike Bob, I hadn't forgotten the moon.  It was pleasing that I
didn't see it for 40 minutes after it rose because of the mountain.
Even when it did, it made no discernible difference to the LM for my
fields in the north despite the cirrus.  There was a bright
Earthshine.  Took a peek at Venus's fine crescent too as the twilight
rose.

> The excitement of the night was a continuation of the activity in
> Taurus.
> 5 meteors provided a sharp radiant at 76 (5:04) +19 very close to the
> 5th magnitude star 104 Tauri.

So far I've looked at some 1989 and 1994 telescopic data.  There are
meteors coming from this direction, but could easily be sporadic
background.  In fact there were more coming from the 3h30m--3h40, +19
region.  What I don't have is sufficient observations from the
ecliptic to give a fix, especially pre-1994.  I like a radiant to be
seen from at least three field centres.  Unfortunately, I've not
located the plots for the 1995 and 1996 data after my move.

The first half of September is one of the best-covered periods during
the last decade of telescopic observations.  It might be a good time
to compile all the data including visual, and report what we have in
WGN.

> I plan to be out through Thursday Sept. 8/9 

I wish I could observe during the week too.  The odds of clear skies
in Hilo are low, but if the clouds relent, I'll do some watches from
my yard.  The next planned session for me will be next weekend,
looking for alpha-Triangulids and delta-Aurigids.  1994 plots suggests
two delta-Aurigid/September Perseid radiants around this time.  The
second is about 4h +58, about 13 degrees NNE of the main radiant. 
So I'd like more meteors to confirm there are two.

Malcolm

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