Amateur telescope making by Ingalis A.G. (ed.)

By Ingalis A.G. (ed.)

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Compare its peak brightness with convenient, recognizable stars whose magnitude you know, or that are listed on your star chart. Pay attention to any special features such as color, a persistent train, or unusual speed. Check the time. Record the data on this meteor on your observing record. 5. The top portion of the form provides the same information that you recorded for the simple meteor count (observer, location, and sky conditions) plus the direction of your primary gaze (to help correlate your results with those of other observers).

This project is not for the faint of heart. It demands a combination of skill and dedication from the observer, and can be either frustrating or boring (or both) while you're learning the skill. However, the great value of the data collected makes it an extremely worthwhile project, and a rewarding way to spend a few nights under the stars. A careful plot of meteor activity is a valuable expenditure of a night's e€ort, whether or not a meteor shower is predicted. 3 Reducing, analyzing, and submitting your results Most nights, the total number of meteors observed and plotted will be modestÐa dozen is a very creditable result for a night's e€ort at this project.

The ``second'' beep of WWV), vs. your ability to react when a surprise event (such as the disappearance of the star) occurs. 1 for a discussion of reaction time, and how to determine yours. 2 Video recording There are, of course, a myriad of things that can corrupt your visual timings (see the next projectÐAsteroid occultationsÐfor some real-life examples). Therefore, your results will be more secure if you can make a permanent record of the occultation. By far the most common method is video recording.

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