SMCAS Speaker Meeting
- General meeting at 7:30 pm in CSM Science Building 36, Room 36.
- Speaker in the planetarium at 8:00 pm. This month: Dr. Peter Jenniskens, SETI.
If you ever spend a night under the stars watching for meteors and saw something unusual, you may want to meet astronomer Dr. Peter Jenniskens. He’s an expert on meteor showers and author of Meteor Showers and their Parent Comets, a 790 page book containing predictions on what unusual meteor showers to expect in the next 50 years.
Peter is best known for his recovery of fragments of asteroid 2008 TC3 in the Nubian Desert of northern Sudan with Sudanese astronomer Muawia Shaddad and his students from the University of Khartoum. This was the first time that an asteroid was spotted in space, observed by telescopes, then samples retrieved for study.
Peter currently runs the NASA sponsored Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance (CAMS) project in northern California, which aims to confirm some of the 300+ meteor showers in the IAU Working List that need confirmation. Sixty video security cameras film the skies over the San Francisco Bay Area. Each confirmed shower identifies past activity from one of the many Near Earth Asteroids that are being discovered in recent years.
He is famous for identifying the parent body of the Quadrantid shower, a minor planet called 2003 EH1, which led to a small renaissance in finding parent bodies of our meteor showers. CAMS already confirmed several showers and discovered a new shower, the February eta Draconids, caused by the trail of dust from a potentially hazardous long-period comet.
The CSM Observatory has a CAMS camera and participates in the CAMS project.
San Mateo, CA 94402 USA
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