2012 08 12 – Perseid Count

Began watching meteor shower at Eagle Eye Observatory site, Canyon of the Eagles, for a public star party. The Moon hadn’t risen at that time and the meteors were very bright. As I was showing members of the public deep sky objects through the telescope, I wasn’t able to keep count of the meteors but I did witness a few bolides along with the meteors I did see.

Came home to Liberty Hill at 0730 UT (0230 CDT) and the 24-day old Moon had risen in Taurus just under Perseus at 26% illumination, drowning out the stars and lowering limiting magnitude to 6.1. Began my count at that time holding a clipboard in front of the Moon, Venus and Jupiter to keep my eyes better adapted to the dark. Will have missed any meteors in that area of the sky that I blocked out plus any really faint meteors in the rest of the sky for that quadrant because of the excess sky glow from the Moon. Was planning on a two-hour counting session at 15-minute intervals, but struggled to keep awake during the 5th interval and am sure I missed several meteors. Ended the observation at that time. During the first 4 intervals, I witnessed 41 Perseids within a 60-minute observing window.

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~ by Erika Rix on August 12, 2012.

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