Journal Article

MU radar head echo observations of the 2011 October Draconids

J. Kero, Y. Fujiwara, M. Abo, C. Szasz and T. Nakamura

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 424, issue 3, pages 1799-1806
Published in print August 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online August 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:

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On 2011 October 8, the Earth passed through a stream of dust ejected by the comet 21P/Giacobini–Zinner during its perihelion passage of the year 1900, causing an outburst of October Draconid meteors. 13 Draconids were observed among ∼6300 meteor head echoes with precisely determined orbits during an observational campaign ranging from October 8 05:00 ut to October 9 13:00 ut with the Shigaraki middle and upper atmosphere (MU) radar in Japan (34°.85 N and 136°.10 E). The meteor outburst occurred while the Draconid radiant was descending below and 2 h later rising up above the horizon. Therefore, 11 of the detections were from very low (<15°) elevation. The detection altitudes of the Draconids were high compared to sporadic meteors of the same velocity and radiant elevation. The weighted mean geocentric velocity of the 13 Draconids was 20.6 ± 0.4 km s−1, and the weighted mean radiant located at right ascension α = 263°.3 ± 0°.6 and declination δ = 55°.8 ± 0°.2.

Keywords: comets: individual: 21P/Giacobini–Zinner; meteorites, meteors, meteoroids

Journal Article.  4052 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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