You can now buy the recently released book, Fall of a Thousand Suns: How Near Misses and Comet Impacts affected the Religious Beliefs of our Ancestors. It is available through iBooks and Amazon.
This website only lists information on modern-day comets and meteor showers. The book, however, thoroughly investigates how specific ancient impacts and near misses changed religious beliefs around the world.
June Bootid Meteor Shower
Discovery of the June Bootid Meteor Shower
On June 28, 1916, in the midst of World War One, an outburst of meteors put the June Bootids "on the map".
Who noticed? People in England were treated to a great celestial display. W.F. Denning, an experienced astronomer, was among them. Shortly after 10:25 pm, according to Denning, "Large meteors came in quick succession from a radiant in the region between Boötes and Draco...[the meteors] were moderately slow, white with yellowish trains, and paths rather short in the majority of cases. Several of the meteors burst or acquired a great intensification of light near the termination of their flights, and gave flashes like distant lightning."
- Discovery of June Bootid Meteor Shower
- The parent body of the June Bootid Meteor Shower
- When are the June Bootids visible?
The Parent Body of the June Bootid Meteor Shower
Shortly after observing the meteor shower on June 28, 1916, W.F. Denning wondered if its appearance could be linked to a comet. Based on the radiant and date, Denning felt the parent body was Comet Pons-Winnecke (7P/Pons-Winnecke). Comet Pons-Winnecke is a Jupiter-Family Comet that orbits the Sun once every 6.37 years. This comet's next perihelion will occur on January 30, 2015.
When are the June Bootids visible?
The June Bootid Meteor Shower peaks on June 27th. Since the radiant is between Bootes and Draco, the June Bootids are best viewed in the northern hemisphere. Compared to other meteor showers, the meteors from the June Bootids are relatively slow at 40,000 miles an hour.
The previously unknown meteor shower has been relatively weak since its debit in 1916 with exceptions in 1921, 1927 and 1998.
In 1927, members of the meteor section of the Russian society Mirovedenie, counted 500 meteors an hour. In 1998, it produced 100 meteors an hour for seven hours. Fireballs were even visible in 1998, when larger debris entered Earth atmosphere. Most years, during its peak, less than twelve meteors an hour are visible. The strength of the meteor shower is very unpredictable, so its in your best interests to look up each year.