Oct 7/8/9 Meteors and Watching for LCROSS

After a few days of clouds, the sky was once again clear over southern AZ. Still, rates are probably lower than they should be due to a bright Moon shining directly overhead during the prime meteor watching hours.

This week should see steadily increasing meteor rates due to the rise of the Orionids (towards an Oct 21/22 peak) and a less obtrusive Moon.

I was up this morning watching the Moon for evidence of NASA’s LCROSS impact experiment. Though the seeing was rather poor, I was able to get some good quality video. Nevertheless, I didn’t see anything from the impact. Then again this was the case with professional telescopes many times larger than mine.

Bob’s notes for 10/8:

“Much like last night, a bright moon and periodic clouds limited the number of meteors recorded tonight. It was interesting to note the Southern Taurids equaled the sporadic rate last night.”

.. for 10/9:

“More or the same with clouds and the moon…”

TUS 2009-10-09 10h 36m  35  19  3   1   4   2   2   0
SDG 2009-10-09 09h 56m  24  17  -   7   0   -   0   0
TUS 2009-10-08 00h 00m  Clouds all night
SDG 2009-10-08 08h 56m  18  8   -   8   2   -   0   0

TUS – Camera in Tucson operated by Carl Hergenrother
SDG – Camera in San Diego operated by Bob Lunsford
TotTime – Total amount of time each camera looked for meteors
TOT – Total number of meteors detected
SPO – Sporadics (meteors not affiliated with any particular meteor shower)
NTA – Northern Taurids (includes Antihelions)
STA – Southern Taurids (includes Antihelions)
ORI – Orionids
DAU – Delta Aurigids
DRA – October Draconids (Giacobinids)
EPC – September Epsilon Piscids


  1. I was out observing last night (Oct 10, 2009) in Northern Utah, USA. I noticed a fireball around the ecliptic to the South of where I was standing. The fireball continued slowly to the South West and died out. It was white/golden, and there was an obvious portion that was NOT on fire. This occurred about 7:45 pm MDT, or 1:45 UT on Oct 10.

    Does this sound like a meteor from one of these showers? Maybe that toolbag that one astronaut dropped? The fireball ended up dying out around Sagittarius. I know the Soyuz module was reentering, but I thought the would have been about an hour later.

  2. On Fri Oct 9, 2009, I was on the Oregon Coast and saw a yellow ball of flame with a red tail. It burned 2-3 seconds as it descended south and east of us. What was this?

  3. Did any person see a red ball of fire in the sky on 11 October 2009 over Cheshire at around 20.30 followed by another 5 minutes later travelling from the north to south east.

    What was this.

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