(meteorobs) Geminids (Meteorobs)

Lewis J. Gramer lgramer at upstream.net
Fri Aug 20 11:08:31 EDT 2004

Well, regular meteor observers sure know that the Geminids are the
"Old Faithful" of major showers - if December weather cooperates,
then the bright and lovely Geminids always seem to perform! :)

Still, we have gotten better and better at predicting outbursts for
other showers - so it leads us to wonder about predicting Geminids...?

Tom wrote:
> Scientists have give the predictions about Leonids and Perseids, but
> it seems no one has give any predictions about Geminids...

Maybe one reason for this, Tom, is that there are still some mysteries
(or at least controversies) surrounding the parent body of the Geminids?

After all, the association with the earth-grazing asteroid 3200 Phaeton
is now pretty certain - but how exactly does an *asteroid* eject dust??

And since most of the recent (successful) Leonid, Perseid, June Bootid,
Alpha Monocerotid, etc. predictions seem to come from dust trail models
that rely heavily on assumptions *about* dust ejection - how well could
such an approach work for an asteroid like Phaeton??

That is - assuming Phaeton isn't just a "burned out comet", as some have
suggested! But if that were so, then *when* did it "burn out", and how
did it eject dust up until that time? Obviously, you might expect that
"predicting the Geminids" could be trickier than it sounds at first! :>

Rainer Arlt then commented:
>Galina Ryabova from Tomsk is modelling the Geminid stream... Let's see
>what she has to tell us at the 2004 IMC in Bulgaria.

I would be very interested to hear more about Dr. Ryabova's techniques
for modeling this stream, Rainer! Any way you might convince her to join
us on this forum, as the Geminids approach? Or maybe one of this year's
IMC attendees can fill us in on her predictions, after the conference?

Clear skies all!

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