Friday, December 20, 2013

Geminids 2013 with Baudmeteors

Last weekend I used Baudmeteors to study the Geminids meteor shower using the Graves radar. I left the computer logging data for more than 120 hours trying to catch the shower peak. And I did it:

For me, the Geminids shower peaked between 4 and 5 UTC on December 14, with 405 meteors per hour. In total, I detected 11834 meteors between December 11, 15:00  and December 16, 22:59 UTC.

The hourly rate histogram shows how the meteor counts goes through a minimum every day around 15-17 UTC (16-18 hours local time) and a maximum 12 hours later just as expected. Interestingly there is a "notch" in the data every day two to three hours before the maximum. I don't know what is the cause, but it is real and not produced by local circumstances, like for example, local noise. Maybe is something Graves related?

Baudmeteors also log meteor's parameters, like the amplitude and duration of the meteor's reflection. If we plot the meteor peak amplitude versus time in a histogram, we get this:

The same in flat (map) form:

We can do the same with the meteor duration:

The same in flat (map) form:

The data I can extract from these graphs is the Geminids meteor shower does not have a predominant meteor amplitude, or meteor length: The meteor distribution seems to be the same along the five days, but at the peak, there is much more meteors, but from all kinds. In other words, The Geminids 2013 shower is not very rich in fireballs. Another interesting thing is the shower is getting stronger and stronger every day until it reach the maximum, and then disappears abruptly.

Baudmeteors also grabs a screenshot of Baudline's screen each time a meteor is detected. These are the meteors detected in a 3 hour span centered around the shower's peak:

The video confirms the graphs above: Many meteors of all types. There are many head echoes in the files, but those need a deeper analysis:

I ran double station observations during the peak, but that needs a lot of time to process and cross-correlate data from both stations. Stay tuned!

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