Lorentz Shaped Comet Dust Trail Cross Section from New Hybrid Visual and Video Meteor Counting Technique - Implications for Future Leonid Storm Encounters


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Abstract

A new hybrid technique of visual and video meteor observations was developed to provide high precision near real-time flux measurements for satellite operators from airborne platforms. A total of 33,000 Leonids, recorded on video during the 1999 Leonid storm, were watched by a team of visual observers using a video head display and an automatic counting tool. The counts reveal that the activity profile of the Leonid storm is a Lorentz profile. By assuming a radial profile for the dust trail that is also a Lorentzian, we make predictions for future encounters. If that assumption is correct, we passed 0.0003 AU deeper into the 1899 trailet than expected during the storm of 1999 and future encounters with the 1866 trailet will be less intense than predicted elsewhere.

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