Characterization of the Meteoroid Spatial Flux Density during the 1999 Leonid Storm
The November 18, 1999 Leonid storm was rich in meteors and well observed by airborne intensified video cameras aimed low in the sky which enabled enhanced meteor counts over ground-based observations. The two- and three-dimensional distribution of meteoroids was investigated for signs of clustering that could provide evidence of meteoroid fragmentation shortly after lift-off from the parent comet 55P/Tempel-Tuttle, or much later due to space weathering. Analysis of the video tapes yields a refined estimation of the mass ratio during the peak of s = 1.65 and spatial flux density of 0.5 particles/km2 greater than those causing visual magnitude +6.5 during the 5 min centered around the peak of the storm. Furthermore, the projection of the individual trails into three-dimensional Heliocentric coordinates, shows non-homogeneity of the stream on spatial scales from hundreds to thousands of kilometers.
KeywordsMeteor shower Meteoroid stream Dust trail Comet Comet dust ejection Dust fragmentation Space weathering
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