Mike's Astro Photos
Jan.04 2012

Quadrantids 2012

by , under Comets & Meteors

We had near perfect conditions in Freeland MD for the peak of the Quadrantids meteor shower on the morning of Jan 4th, 2012. Here is a composite image containing 6 Quadrantid meteors captured between 2 and 4 am EDT.

Quadrantid Meteor Shower - January 4th, 2012

I had a multitude of cameras setup to capture the show including: 2 DSLRs, 3 security cameras and a new Orion all sky camera. I’m glad I had a wide variety of instruments because some didn’t work at all and others worked better at some things and worse at others. It was my first night using the all sky camera and I’m disappointed to admit that it captured ZERO meteors. I’m hoping I had a error in my operation. One of my DSLRs filled up the memory card after only 2 hours and I didn’t realize it till the morning. By far the security cameras picked up the most meteors, totaling 53. I found that most of these meteors were detected between 2-5 am. I also captured the most meteors in the southern skies at low elevations.

Here’s a compilation video of all the meteors captured on the security cameras.

While reviewing the DSLR photos I was disappointed to find most of the meteors caught on the security cameras did not get caught on the DSLR. The DSLR only captured about 8 meteors total, compared to 53 on the security cameras, so clearly the DSLR lens is not catching everything. I did find this nice fireball that left a persistent train that last for a few minutes. Here’s a full zoom image.

Quadrantid Meteor - January 4th, 2012

Here’s a single exposure that caught two meteors within a 30 second period. This DSLR exposure was also caught on video and both meteors happened at the same exact time! I repeated the sequence 3 times in the video.

Double Quandrantid Meteors - CLICK TO ENLARGE

Overall, a strong performance for the Quadrantids IMO and a very great way to start 2012!


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