The Dragon Wakes

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    Alex Pratt

    Meteor Section Director Dr John Mason discusses the prospects for observing the October Draconids in this headline article.

    As expected, rates have been low; I’ve recorded only 5 Draconids this month and last night my cameras were under a blanket of cloud.. However, John is receiving reports from radio observers of a Draconids outburst last night (23hrs UT October 8/9), giving a significant increase in rates. Video and visual observers in continental Europe and Iceland confirm the enhanced activity, noting many faint meteors of mags 4 and 5 with some as bright as mag 0, comparing the shower with the Perseids, with a ZHR up to 100.

    If you can contribute to the monitoring of the Draconids please send your observations to


    James Lancashire

    One Draconid at 0035UT and an earlier sporadic from digital camera operating at 50% exposure time for 6h40m on 2018 Oct 08/09

    Michael O’Connell

    Thanks for the heads-up Alex.

    Noticeable peak last night.

    See attached plot of detections from my radio setup.

    I will analyse the data in further detail in the next few days.



    Bill Ward


    The weather here was extremely poor on the 8/9 so thank goodness for the radio observations! Saw a nice clear peak on the radio. Tweeted a few graphs but they could still do with some tweaks. 10 min bins loses some of the general form and hourly bins lose the detail, might try 30min counts….!

    In any case the peak rate with me was between 0000ut and 0100ut with a total count of 138 meteors (Draconids plus any others) Entirely subjective manual counts from the HROfft captures, so probably a few +/- throughout . A good result though.

    Would’ve been nice to have have had a peek at the shower visually.



    David Dunn


    I have managed to detect a small number of Draconids. I only just realised that using the UA2 software I needed to use the ULE_J6 baseline. The J5 sile does not detect Draconids. Attached is the Draconid meteor data, (date and timestamp).

    It will be interesting to see the consolidated data at the end of the month.



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