Abstract: A summary of the activity of the CAMS BeNeLux network during the month of September 2021 is presented. September 2021 counted many clear nights. 24894 multiple station meteors were recorded. A record number of 7457 orbits were collected during this month with a maximum of 93 cameras available at 27 locations.
Previous years the month of September brought favorable weather circumstances combined with a rich meteor activity, although no major showers are active this time of the year. Nights are getting longer, about two hours more nighttime between begin of September and the end of the month. What did September 2021 bring us?
2 September 2021 statistics
CAMS BeNeLux collected 24894 multi-station meteors (12997 in September 2020, 14826 in 2019), good for 7457 orbits (6132 in 2020, 4609 in 2019). This is an absolute record for the month September, much better than the record of last year. This month counted as many as 26 nights with more than 100 orbits (20 in 2020, 15 in 2019). The best September night was 7–8 with as many as 543 orbits in a single night, the best score in orbits ever for a September night. Not any single night remained without orbits (4 in 2020, 1 in 2021). The statistics of September 2021 are compared in Figure 1 and Table 1 with the same month in previous years since the start of CAMS BeNeLux in 2012. In 10 years, 265 September nights allowed to obtain orbits with a grand total of 37602 orbits collected during September during all these years together.
The weather was very favorable in September 2021, with almost twice as many multi-station meteors than in 2020. The larger number of cameras that were operational also provided better coverage compared to previous years with favorable weather. The northern part of the CAMS BeNeLux network still suffered less good coverage as some of the CAMS stations were temporarily inactive or unable to contribute for various reasons.
The volume of atmosphere monitored by the CAMS BeNeLux cameras is huge. If all or most cameras are kept operational, most of the meteors registered will help to obtain an orbit. It is important to keep as many cameras operational as possible. This remains a challenge as technical failures cannot be ruled out. Some extra camera stations would be very welcome to reinforce the northern and entire western part of the network. The new RMS cameras are most suitable for this task as these systems are fully automatic.
Table 1 – September 2021 compared to previous months of September.
|Year||Nights||Orbits||Stations||Max. Cams||Min. Cams||Mean Cams|
Two RMS cameras were added at Zillebeke near Ypres, CAMS 3853 (BE0003 which was previously installed at Cosmodrome in Genk) and CAMS 3851 (BE0009 home built by Steve Rau). These new cameras will improve the coverage above Belgium and Zeeland. With a total of 93 cameras, never before more cameras were available during September.
The effectiveness of the RMS cameras is obvious when we compare the number of orbits obtained by individual cameras. An RMS camera with a 6 mm lens has the same resolution of 2.5 arcminutes per pixel for its FoV of 54° × 30° compared to a Watec in PAL format with FoV of 30° × 22°. The RMS will capture more meteors because of its larger FoV. Moreover, the astrometric calibration of the RMS software is superior to that of the CAMS software for its Watecs.
Table 2 – Comparing RMS cameras among the twenty cameras of the CAMS BeNeLux network with the best score in terms of orbits during September 2021.
|Camera||Total orbits||Total nights|
|003817 (RMS, Grapfontaine, BE)||1063||30|
|003814 (RMS, Grapfontaine, BE)||1045||30|
|003816 (RMS, Lesve, BE)||668||30|
|000378 (RMS, Kattendijke, NL)||530||30|
|003830 (RMS Mechelen, BE)||527||30|
|003800 (RMS, Langenfeld, DE)||504||30|
|000816 (Watec, Humain, BE)||493||30|
|003819 (RMS Genk, BE)||493||30|
|003801 (RMS, Holdorf, DE)||471||30|
|003900 (Watec, Nancy, FR)||469||30|
|000380 (Watec, Wilderen, BE)||454||30|
|003891 (Watec, Mechelen, BE)||447||30|
|000394 (Watec, Dourbes, BE)||445||30|
|003831 (RMS Mechelen, BE)||433||30|
|003818 (RMS Genk, BE)||425||30|
|000814 (Watec, Grapfontaine, BE)||421||30|
|003833 (Watec, Mechelen, BE)||404||28|
|003836 (Watec, Mechelen, BE)||386||28|
|000393 (Watec, Uccle, BE)||381||30|
|003890 (Watec, Mechelen, BE)||378||30|
September 2021 confirmed the reputation of this month with a very rich background meteor activity and favorable weather. It will be hard to improve the record number of orbits in the future.
Many thanks to all participants in the CAMS BeNeLux network for their dedicated efforts. The data on which this report is based has been taken from the CAMS website. The CAMS BeNeLux team was operated by the following volunteers during September 2021:
Hans Betlem (Woold, CAMS 3071, 3072 and 3073), Felix Bettonvil (Utrecht, Netherlands, CAMS 376 and 377), Jean-Marie Biets (Wilderen, Belgium, CAMS 379, 380, 381 and 382), Ludger Boergerding (Holdorf, Germany, RMS 3801), Martin Breukers (Hengelo, Netherlands, CAMS 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326 and 327, RMS 328 and 329), Guiseppe Canonaco (Genk, RMS 3818, RMS 3819), Pierre de Ponthiere (Lesve, Belgium, RMS 3816), Bart Dessoy (Zoersel, Belgium, CAMS 397, 398, 804, 805, 806 and 3888), Tammo Jan Dijkema (Eelderwolde, Netherlands, RMS 3198, Dwingeloo, Netherlands, RMS 3199), Jean-Paul Dumoulin, Dominique Guiot and Christian Walin (Grapfontaine, Belgium, CAMS 814 and 815, RMS 3814, RMS 3817), Uwe Glässner (Langenfeld, Germany, RMS 3800), Luc Gobin (Mechelen, Belgium, CAMS 3890, 3891, 3892 and 3893), Tioga Gulon (Nancy, France, CAMS 3900 and 3901), Robert Haas (Alphen aan de Rijn, Netherlands, CAMS 3160, 3161, 3162, 3163, 3164, 3165, 3166 and 3167), Robert Haas (Texel, Netherlands, CAMS 811, 812 and 813), Kees Habraken (Kattendijke, Netherlands, RMS 378), Klaas Jobse (Oostkapelle, Netherlands, CAMS 3030, 3031, 3032, 3033, 3034, 3035, 3036 and 3037), Carl Johannink (Gronau, Germany, CAMS 3001, 3002, 3003, 3004, 3005, 3006, 3007, 3008, 3009 and 3010), Reinhard Kühn (Flatzby, Germany, RMS 3802), Hervé Lamy (Dourbes, Belgium, CAMS 394 and 395), Hervé Lamy (Humain Belgium, CAMS 816), Hervé Lamy (Ukkel, Belgium, CAMS 393), Koen Miskotte (Ermelo, Netherlands, CAMS 3051, 3052, 3053 and 3054), Steve Rau (Zillebeke, Belgium, CAMS 3850, 3852, RMS 3851, RMS 3853), Paul and Adriana Roggemans (Mechelen, Belgium, RMS 3830 and 3831, CAMS 3832, 3833, 3834, 3835, 3836 and 3837), Hans Schremmer (Niederkruechten, Germany, CAMS 803).