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Meteor outburst profiles and cometary ejection Armagh Observatory, College Hill, Armagh, BT61 9DG, UK

Summary: Meteor outburst profiles and cometary ejection
D.J. Asher
Armagh Observatory, College Hill, Armagh, BT61 9DG, UK
(E-mail: dja@arm.ac.uk)
Abstract. The spatial structure of meteor streams, and the activity profiles of
their corresponding meteor showers, depend firstly on the distribution of me-
teoroid orbits soon after ejection from the parent comet nucleus, and secondly
on the subsequent dynamical evolution. The latter increases in importance as
more time elapses. For younger structures within streams, notably the dust
trails that cause sharp meteor outbursts, it is the cometary ejection model
(meteoroid production rate as a function of time through the several months
of the comet's perihelion return, and velocity distribution of the meteoroids
released) that primarily determines the shape and width of the trail struc-
ture. This paper describes how a trail cross section can be calculated once an
ejection model has been assumed. Such calculations, if made for a range of
ejection model parameters and compared with observed parameters of storms
and outbursts, can be used to constrain quantitatively the process of mete-
oroid ejection from the nucleus, including the mass distribution of ejected


Source: Armagh Observatory


Collections: Physics