It’s raining meteors – a 3D view of the Perseids!
The UK Meteor Observation Network continues to grow and by the end of 2013 there may be as many as 18 cameras on line. This is very nearly twice the number that Richard Kacerek and Peter Campbell-Burns had set as their target at the start of the year. A list of the operational cameras is available here,
Data for the Perseids is still being processed by some of the members but meanwhile Peter has been looking at ways to visualise the data. Realising that the analysis of multi-station observations results in latitude, longitude and altitude of the start and end points of a meteor trail, Peter has ben able to convert the processed data into the “Keyhole Mark-up Language” or “KML” used by Google Earth and has produced this unusual three dimensional view of Perseids meteor showers.
Peter tells us that using Google Earth makes this a fully interactive visualisation. It is possible to change your viewpoint and view the meteors from any location on Earth and clicking on trail gives information such as velocity and altitudes. It is also possible to watch the meteors over the period of the shower.
The “Find your nearest society” map on the SAGAS website is driven by a KML file. Peter would be glad to share his knowledge with any societies that have an application for Google Earth and KML.