n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Detection of meteor streams and first light for CAMS@SA

Volume 78 Number 5-6
  • ISSN : 0024-8266


Meteors are the debris left behind during the passage of comets around the Sun. After release from their parent comet, these meteors continue to orbit the Sun in a similar orbit to the parent comet and, when the orbits of the Earth and meteor stream coincide, the result is a meteor shower. While many showers exist for which the parent is unknown, these showers are the smoking guns of comets that have previously intersected with Earth’s orbit, and may do so again in future. The use of low light video to detect meteor streams and its use in the identification of potentially hazardous comets, which have yet to be discovered, is described. The participation in the Cameras for All-sky Meteor Surveillance (CAMS) network in conjunction with the SETI Institute, and the consequent setup and first light of the CAMS@SA network, which is a joint development between the author and Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory (HartRAO), is outlined.

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