Characterization of the Meteoroid Spatial Flux Density during the 1999 Leonid Storm
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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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