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Pictures of Unexpected Kappa Cygnid Meteors
08.15.07
 
 
An unexpected meteor shower popped up during the annual Perseids meteor shower Aug. 11 - 13, 2007. Among the fast-moving Perseid meteors were several slow-moving meteors from a shower called the "Kappa Cygnids," radiating from a point between the bright stars of Wega and Deneb. Some meteors were as bright as the first quarter moon and flashed in multiple colors.

Scientists captured images of several of the Kappa Cygnid meteors during the Perseid meteor shower while the researchers were on a test flight that they took to prepare for an upcoming airborne observing campaign to study the predicted return of the rare Aurigid meteor shower, two weeks later, on Sept. 1, 2007.

"Amazingly, for just trying, we already got something out of this campaign," said principal investigator and meteor astronomer, Dr. Peter Jenniskens of the SETI Institute, Mountain View, Calif., who is a member of a team of NASA and other scientists. "This shower was a big surprise!" he said.

Unlike the Aurigids, the Kappa Cygnids do not have a known parent body, and no predictions can be made yet to forecast the next return, according to Jenniskens. They move in short, six to12-year orbits and are much younger than the 2,000-year-old Aurigids. The Kappa Cygnid shower last occurred in 1993, and possibly in 1999, Jenniskens noted. Other astronomers also took pictures of the recent Kappa Cygnid meteors.

Scientists hope the general public will submit digital images and camcorder pictures to scientists who will study the upcoming Aurigid meteor shower Sept. 1, 2007. The public may upload their images and data to the Aurigid Meteor Shower Web site at: http://aurigid.seti.org

To read a feature story about the mission and how to take meteor images that scientists could use, please visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/missions/2007/Aurigid.html.

To view a vodcast about the Kappa Cygnids meteors on Aug. 13, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/multimedia/podcasting/Perseid.html

An unexpected meteor shower popped up during the annual Perseids meteor shower Aug. 11 - 13, 2007. Among the fast-moving Perseid meteors were several slow-moving meteors from a shower called the Image Left: Kappa Cygnid meteor appears near the Big Dipper as seen from near Havelte in the Netherlands on August 14, 2007. This image may be used in news publications without further permission from the copyright holder. To ask about all other potential uses of the image, please send an e-mail message to space@aviaworld.com


Photo Credit: Jan Eric Krikke (space@aviaworld.com)
Click on the image for full-resolution.

An unexpected meteor shower popped up during the annual Perseids meteor shower Aug. 11 - 13, 2007. Among the fast-moving Perseid meteors were several slow-moving meteors from a shower called the Image Left: Image of a -4 magnitude Kappa Cygnid meteor as seen from Ermelo in the Netherlands, August 18, 2007, 21:38 UT. This image may be used in news publications without further permission from the copyright holder. To ask about all other potential uses of the image, please send an e-mail message to koen.miskotte@versatel.nl..


Photo Credit: Koen Miskotte, Dutch Meteor Society, Harderwijk, the Netherlands.
Click on the image for full-resolution.

An unexpected meteor shower popped up during the annual Perseids meteor shower Aug. 11 - 13, 2007. Among the fast-moving Perseid meteors were several slow-moving meteors from a shower called the Image Left: Images of two kappa Cygnid meteors (top left corner) and nine Perseid meteors taken Aug. 12 - 13, 2007, are combined in this photograph by Koen Miskotte. He took the images with a Canon 10D camera and a Canon EF 2.8/15 millimeter fish eye lens. He operated the camera with a Timer controller TC-80N3. He also attached the camera to a Vixen autoguider. This image may be used in news publications without further permission from the copyright holder. To ask about all other potential uses of the image, please send an e-mail message to koen.miskotte@versatel.nl.


Photo Credit: Koen Miskotte, Dutch Meteor Society, Harderwijk, the Netherlands.
Click on the image for full-resolution.



 
 
Find this article at:
 
http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/multimedia/images/2007/Kappa_Cygnids.html