THE PERSEID METEOROID STREAM - CHARACTERIZATION OF RECENT ACTIVITY FROM VISUAL OBSERVATIONS

Authors
Citation
P. Brown et J. Rendtel, THE PERSEID METEOROID STREAM - CHARACTERIZATION OF RECENT ACTIVITY FROM VISUAL OBSERVATIONS, Icarus, 124(2), 1996, pp. 414-428
Citations number
42
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Astronomy & Astrophysics
Journal title
IcarusACNP
ISSN journal
0019-1035
Volume
124
Issue
2
Year of publication
1996
Pages
414 - 428
Database
ISI
SICI code
0019-1035(1996)124:2<414:TPMS-C>2.0.ZU;2-I
Abstract
The flux profile of the Perseid stream from 1988 to 1994 is analyzed u sing visual observations of meteors. The position and peak flux of rec ently detected outburst maxima are found for each year, as are the loc ation and magnitude of the regular maximum. Details of the reduction p rocedure for these visual data are also presented. The Perseid stream is found to consist of three primary components: a long-lived and rela tively weak background component, a core component which is active for 1-2 days near the main peak of the shower, and an outburst component which is active for only a few hours. The latter component changes pos ition and strength dramatically from year to year, while the core maxi mum remains at a near constant location of lambda(z) = 139.degrees 96 +/- 0.degrees 05 and shows a variance of less than 30% from a mean pea k flux of S-6.5 max = 96 +/- 16 meteoroids per 10(9) km(3) during 1988 -1994. The outburst peak locations show no systematic variation from y ear to year, though the magnitude of the peak flux shows a significant difference for returns before 1991 compared to those after 1991. This may indicate an ejection origin other than 1862 for outburst material encountered before 1991. The particle composition of the outburst max imum and that of the core maximum are indistinguishable. A double maxi mum in the population index associated with these activity maxima has been detected in the average Perseid profile. High temporal resolution study of the flux profile of the ascending branches of the outburst p rofiles in 1993 and 1994 suggests that this component may consist of s ub-components of differing ages. The mean visual flux of the shower is in excellent agreement with past radar results. The most important fe atures of the stream gleaned from this study which must be explained b y any model of the Perseids are also summarized. (C) 1996 Academic Pre ss, Inc.