Jump to content

Stars_Banner.jpg.843f9de1cf2bdcd4b91ede4312ecf0ca.jpg

Taurid meteor shower - peaking over the next few weeks/months


Recommended Posts

Just a quick reminder that the Taurids are now active, and due to peak in early November. The Taurids are not like other major meteor showers. Even at peak rates are low (in a good hour, at a near ideal observing site you might only see a hand full), but a significant portion are bright or even extremely bright. This year is special since they peak on a 7 year cycle, and this year is the peak of that cycle, so there should be a good helping of bright Taurids over the next few weeks/months as the peak is not very sharp (like some showers) - expect a slow drizzle of bright meteors and fireballs on top of an already busy time of year for meteors.

Further reading:

Taurid complex smoking gun: detection of cometary activity

Taurid stream #628: a reservoir of large cometary impactors

An observational synthesis of the Taurid meteor complex

I'm already seeing/catching bright Taurids, like this small fireball (Edit: A Taurid according to UKMON analysis) my camera caught (albeit not under great conditions) a few nights back. So far I've seen or recorded 8 fireballs since the start of the month. Last night one of the cameras caught this fireball (probably not a Taurid), but only partially:

 

Edited by Leo S
added note/link to analysis
  • Like 5
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
1 hour ago, Leo S said:

It looks like they are getting their info from the IMO:

https://www.imo.net/

There are a couple of pieces there that are worth a look.

Are you the same scotty from UKweatherworld?

Hi yes I'm the same scotty 

I've just noticed your earlier post about the Taurid cycle 🤭 

Edited by scotty1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, scotty1 said:

Hi yes I'm the same scotty 

I've just noticed your earlier post about the Taurid cycle 🤭 

I suspected you might be. Good to see you here too scotty.

One of my worst fears just became reality. A fireball (image in link taken by UKMON camera - not my own) appeared in the FOV of one of the cameras just as I double tapped the recorder to stop/start! It seems my finger hit the recorder just as the first flare occurred, and by the time the next clip had started the second flare had already occurred! It wasn't a Taurid, but I'll try and post a clip later.

  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lots of fireballs tonight already. At least 5 so far (checked up to around 00:00 UT) I'll try to attach some UKMON captures (not my cameras) below. Not sure if any are Taurinds yet.

 

M20221027_212454_tytherington_n_UK007PP.

M20221027_212902_bassingham_sw_UK0070P.j

M20221027_232402_retford_nw_UK0072P.jpg

M20221028_000847_wilcot_sw_UK003EP.jpg

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, scotty1 said:

The forecast isn't great but a few clear spells tonight. After that alot of cloud around  for the next week or so in  the UK.

 

The nice thing about the Taurids is the cloud should not be too much of an issue, as long as it's not too thick. They can be very bright. I ran my cameras most of the night last night, even though much of the time I could not see any stars. Still have not had a chance to check most of the footage, and the cameras are running again.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I tried for a couple of hours early on last night, but it just got cloudier, so I gave up. Looking slightly better tonight - at least there is some clear sky I can see heading this way now, so cameras are once again running.

The rate of Taurid fireballs being caught by NASA jumped last night - from spaceweather.com :

On Oct 29, 2022, the network reported 47 fireballs.
(24 southern Taurids, 18 sporadics, 4 Orionids, 1 omicron Eridanid)

orbital.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Clear last night so had a look from the garden. I saw 4 meteors in about an hour and 45 mins. They all fell in the north, first one was the brightest it was  yellow about as bright as Jupiter. The other three were about as bright as Polaris. They were slow/  moderate in speed. I had two DSLRs running, taking 15secs exposure one facing north,the other south for about two hours , with breaks to change batteries. I didn't get any meteors on photo. Looking rather cloudy for a while, so that's why I had a go last night. I'm not sure if these were all Taurids, but they were all in the north originating from about 80° above horizon. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There were plenty last night, but it seems mostly earlier on. As soon as it stopped raining here, a little after 01:00 UT, it seemed to quiet down. Nevertheless the cameras caught a couple of fairly bright southern Taurids, one of them a significant fireball, but it was quite a long way off, over the N. Sea, so not very impressive. Frustratingly there was one large fireball which I spotted on UKMON meteors live, but it occurred when I stopped the cameras for rain earlier on in the night.

Raining here again tonight, but may be some clear spells in the second half of tomorrow night according to the forecast, so hope to try again then, although perhaps the best is looking like it may be over.. but perhaps not, and there is more to come.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The brightest one I saw yesterday was 02.20, I'm not sure if the peak is around Nov 5th ( natures fireworks) or some sources say that the Taurids will be active for another month or so. I expect the enhanced rates won't last as long. Only 3 Taurid fireballs on Spaceweather so you may be right about the peak. I use small portable camera mounts from open windows to get photos. It must be easier to have a dedicated camera permanently setup. If only we had a desert climate for a couple of weeks...

Edited by scotty1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the best clue is here:

Quote

Results of the model show “the hypothetical asteroids should be very bright (mag +19 and brighter), and reasonably well concentrated in the sky for a few days around Oct 30“,

NEOs are going to be easiest to see when Earth is closest to the core of the swarm, and this should also correlate to fireball rates. I think I read  "3 days either side of peak" somewhere, so if that is right, then rates should fall from here on. That may not be the case, and we might see a further peak, so still worth keeping an eye out, but either way there should still be at least the occasional Taurid fireball for a couple more weeks.

I also currently have one camera sticking out of a first floor window, a bit precariously on a tripod balanced on a windowsill, but it does the trick. The other camera is just outside the back door, also on a tripod. It certainly is frustrating when it rains on and off like it did earlier on last night - I find myself running around trying to get cameras covered or indoors quite often, and the lenses get a wash on a fairly regular basis! I have been meaning to automate/weatherproof cameras for some years now, but things went a bit pear shaped at our old house and we ended up renting, so that is on hold till the next move, hopefully in coming months.

Here are the best catches from last night.

 

Edited by Leo S
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It had cleared up nicely by about 01:00 here last night (and stayed clear), so not a bad night, and there were plenty of bright meteors/fireballs being picked up by UKMON so hopeful that I caught at least a couple. Have not had a chance to go through the footage yet though, and we've got clear sky here now, so cameras are running again.

Edited by Leo S
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cameras running again tonight, and currently very clear. Already seeing some. A nice -1 mag Taurid grazer @ 19:24:10, and a short one just a few minutes back. Looking like it will be another busy night for fireballs - there were a few last night, and the night before.

 

Edit: Update - Seeing quite a few bright ones. Two at least caught on camera in the last 30 mins (currently just before 23:00) despite bad conditions (haze/moon glare), but these are brighter than on previous nights, so easily cut through the glare, and visible on my screen despite 5000 ISO! I want to move the camera to point it up and get a higher ISO but I'm frightened to do so as it keeps catching bright ones!

Edited by Leo S
update
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, andrew63 said:

I'm not sure if this is a Taurid Meteor? Captured from iPhone at 10.47, conditions hazy and lots of firework smoke. Aldebaran is at the bottom of image.

Taurid.JPG

I think you got one. Nod bad going to catch on a phone, even though these are quite long lasting, and bright. Did you click the shutter when you saw it?

It fogged out here over the last hour or so, but hopefully it'll disperse soon.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very interesting, and great to hear there is an app out there that caters for meteors. Can I ask what the app is? Sorry for all the questions!

 

PS. I think I found the event you captured, also captured (@ 22:47:29) by a UKMON camera in Wales:

M20221105_224729_treworga_e_UK003CP.jpg

Definitely a southern Taurid.

Edited by Leo S
PS
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, andrew63 said:

Thanks that great - the app is called NightCap. On meteor mode you press the shutter on phone and then leave it to carry on taking images, it takes lots of 5sec exposures and only saves the ones that could have meteors - very clever!

https://www.nightcapcamera.com/nightcap-camera/

Neat. Can exposure time be changed from 5 sec? It sounds OK for faster meteors/showers, where even long ones tend to last under a second, but for the slower meteors like Taurids, longer exposures would be better. Some of the Taurids I've captured last close to 3 seconds (a big fireball can easily last 2x that!), with around 2 seconds being average, so there is a very high probability that a 5 sec exposure would only catch part of an event. Normally, when using DSLRs, I like to try to keep exposure times in the 10-20 sec range if I can, although if the sky is bright I'll (reluctantly) go lower.

Thanks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.