Listening To The Leonids - 2002

Video footage by: Harold Goldberg

Even as psyched up as one can be for any type of an astronomy event - weather happens. The highly anticipated Leonid Meteor Shower of 2002 was rained out. Disappointed, I found myself on the web looking for any type of current standings on the fall rate. Remembering last year's fantastic experience, I also recalled a "live broadcast" of radio meteor listening. Taking a chance that I might find the same type of thing this year, I happily stumbled upon more than one site that gave fantastically easy instructions on how to build your own radio meteor listening station!

Of course, I was intrigued. A recent tornado had uprooted a my old style television antenna, and the instructions were so simple! Even using an FM antenna and receiver could produce results... Check out this ESA site. Could it be done?

Why not?!? Once again, I am working with simple "principles"... Just as I have done with astrophotography and spectral analysis, it is possible to do some pretty amazing things with some very ordinary equipment!

Now let's listen...


Excited by what I was hearing over an old television set tuned to a low frequency, I was aslo skeptical as to the results. Fortunately, I have a wonderful friend who was able to take my wav file and turn it into a visual that we could compare with other known meteor wav files... The results? Fantastic! Not only could I hear what I recorded, but see it as well. All those strange sounds were indeed Leonid meteors.

As always, I gave it my best!

~the Astronomer

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