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Old 03-12-2017, 05:42 PM
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OzEclipse (Joe Cali)
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Lunar Impact Observations Dec 13-15

Another thread in this forum, "Asteroid 3200 Phaethon: Geminid Parent at Its Closest and Brightest" started by Lindon
describes the close approach of the Geminid Parent to Earth mid December. The asteroid passage also coincides with the Geminid meteor shower and a waning crescent moon.

The geometry of this passage and the Lunar phase favours observation of meteor impact flashes on the dark Earth-lit part of the lunar crescent during the early morning (pre-dawn) hours of December 13-15 from debris from this body.

Lunar impact flashes, seen through Earth-based telescopes occur at a rate of about one per several hours, but are more frequent during major meteor showers.

Here are possible observation windows in EDT for Canberra.

December.........Moonrise.........% sunlit.......AST TWI.....Obs window
13......................2:44....... ......26%...........03:55.......... ..60 mins
14......................3:16....... ......18%...........03:55.......... ..30 mins
15......................3:49....... ......11%...........03:55.......... ...0 mins

Sydney and Melbourne times will be similar. If you have your location set in your IIS settings, the Moon phase calculator will calculate Moonrise and twilight times for you. The observation window on the 15th is marginal. The moon is unlikely to gain sufficient altitude to enable observations of any but the brightest flashes before twilight sets in. I have allowed 10mins after astro twilight and 20 mins after moonrise for the Moon to reach about 5 degrees altitude in my estimates of the length observation windows.

Impact flashes are red and estimated to be around magnitudes 7-10, some even brighter.
The attached image shows the impact distribution diagram for the 2017 Geminids against the Moon’s night side. Orientated with north towards the top.

The source article deals with a project coordinating timed video observations and contains more info if you are interested.

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Last edited by OzEclipse; 03-12-2017 at 06:40 PM.
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Old 03-12-2017, 07:37 PM
geolindon (Lindon)
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WOAH Joe, seeing an impact would be i'll certainly be having a look and looking foward to AP's posts
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Old 04-12-2017, 08:10 PM
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tonybarry (Tony)
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Hi Joe,

Thanks for the heads up on the Geminids. I will advise the local occ crew.

Tony Barry
Penrith, NSW
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Old 13-12-2017, 08:38 AM
geolindon (Lindon)
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G day,

I found a great position on Stroud Hill and stared into the 8.8 mm e.p. in the 16" from 3.30 'til 5 . . . . n . . . i reckon i saw nuttin

a coupla meteors flashed through my fov

lotsa little light specs but i put them down to averted imagination 'cos it seemed they were off the limb too.

a great way to spend the morning AND i saw a cute Jupiter moon conjunction at dawn

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Old 13-12-2017, 08:49 AM
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ZeroID (Brent)
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'... averted imagination ...'
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Old 14-12-2017, 04:31 PM
geolindon (Lindon)
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I'm not original Brent, saw it on here some time back.

I've been watching for posts and or pics from this event - can't find any.

this you tube vid from NASA in 2013 shows what i was hoping to see

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