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Astron. Astrophys. 351, 752-758 (1999)

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5. Analysis of radiants

In the previous paper (Neslusan 1999), we found that [FORMULA] of observed [FORMULA]Capricornids meteors selected from the IAU Meteor Data Center database at the limiting value of D discriminant equal to 0.24 were also identified with the modelled particles of 14P/Wolf stream. However, no meteor of [FORMULA]Capricornids was identified with the particles of stream of D/1892 T1 in spite of the relationship between the streams of 14P/Wolf and D/1892 T1 demonstrated in Sect. 4. This apparent paradox can be explained analysing the radiants of the observed meteors identified with the modelled streams of both the comets as well as the radiants of [FORMULA]Capricornids.

The radiants of the meteors of the [FORMULA]Capricornids meteor shower, the meteors associated with comet 14P/Wolf, and the meteors associated with D/1892 T1 (Barnard 3) are displayed in Fig. 2, plots a, b, c, respectively. In plot b, one can see two regions where the radiants of individual meteors of 14P/Wolf stream are grouped. Hence, it is natural to divide the stream into two strands: upper and lower. Another reason for such a division comes from a certain grouping of orbital elements of the meteors (see Table 3). The lowest ecliptic latitude of meteors of the upper strand is [FORMULA] and the highest ecliptic latitude of meteors of lower strand is [FORMULA], therefore ecliptic latitude of about [FORMULA] can be recognized as a border between both the regions. (In the database, where the radiants are specified by the equatorial coordinates, the lowest declination of meteors of the upper strand is [FORMULA] and the highest declination of the lower strand is [FORMULA]. Here, declination about [FORMULA] can be regarded as the border.)

[FIGURE] Fig. 2a-c. The radiants of meteors of the [FORMULA]Capricornids meteor shower a , meteors associated with comet 14P/Wolf b , and meteors associated with comet D/1892 T1 c displayed in the Hammer projection of a celestial sphere. The frame is ecliptic. The meteors are selected using limiting [FORMULA].

Comparing the plots, it is clear that the meteors of D/1892 T1 coincide only with those of the upper strand of 14P/Wolf stream. Since both the strands of 14P/Wolf stream mutually coincide because of the common parent body and the lower strand of 14P/Wolf stream coincides with the [FORMULA]Capricornids meteor shower as well as, at the same time, with the stream of 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusáková, we can regard the D/1892 T1 stream as one part of the overlapping stream complex of all three comets considered.

The mean radiants as well as geocentric and heliocentric velocities of the streams considered are given in Table 6. As in the calculation of mean elements in Sect. 4, weighted values are used into the calculation of mean quantities. The time of stream activity maximum is not presented because its determination on the basis of a very low number of meteors is not reliable (no peak well defined can be noticed).


Table 6. Some geophysical data of meteor streams associated with comets 14P/Wolf (upper and lower strands), D/1892 T1, as well as 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusáková having associated a stream coinciding with the lower strand of the 14P/Wolf stream. The corresponding data on the [FORMULA]Capricornids meteor shower are attached, too. [FORMULA], [FORMULA] - right ascension and declination of mean radiant (in degrees), [FORMULA], [FORMULA] - mean geocentric and heliocentric velocities (in km s-1).

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: November 3, 1999