2020, Oct. 29 - Peter Jenniskens issued a CBET telegram describing a peculiar shower detected in 2019 CAMS data. Now named the 29 Piscids (IAU 1046), the shower was briefly detected in the period October 17-19, and then again a month later on Nov 11-18. The stream originated from a Jupiter Family comet. The shape of the orbit and its orientation are the same in the October and November apparitions, so we suspect this is the same stream. The meteoroids move in a very low inclined orbit, almost in the orbital plane of Earth.
2020, Oct. 14 - A strong outburst of a new shower, now called A-Carinids, was detected by all southern hemisphere networks. The radiant is near the ecliptic pole. Tim Cooper deteted the shower visually towards the tail of activity. A CBET was issued.
2020, Sep. 22 - An outburst was detected just above the Hyades. Now called the September upsilon Taurids (IAU shower 1045). A CBET was issued.
2020, Sep. 12 - A new network was added to the CAMS family: CAMS Texas. Operated by Walt Cooney. Thanks to support by Luke Juneau and Dave Samuels, the new network started off with four cameras, two at each location. The sites are near Houston. On September 12, 12 meteors were triangulated.
2020, Aug. 30 - After six years of hosting the CAMS New Zealand station at his private observatory in Geraldine, CAMS NZ founder and well known amateur astronomer Peter Aldous decided he had reached an age where it no longer was safe to climb the roof observatory to maintain CAMS. CAMS NZ coordinator Jack Baggaley found a new site at Mount John observatory, where Nigel Frost has taken over the technical duty of maintaining the CAMS station. The new site had a first clear night on August 30th.
2020, Aug. 21 - Starting on August 18, the CAMS networks picked up meteors that were labelled "chi Cygnids", IAU shower 797. The radiant in August was still in Aquila. This early sighting forwarned a period of activity from this shower, which hadn't been seen since 2015. Indeed, the shower manifested much as expected, peaking in mid September. A CBET was issued and a paper summarizing the 2020 return was written for the journal JIMO.
2020, Aug. 19 - In the evening of August 19, a wildfire swept past Lick Observatory. Firefighters managed to fend off the flames and all but one unused building was spared. However, flames crept up the hill and licked the power conduit of CAMS, melting the plastic cover and cable. CAMS at Lick Observatory was without power while the area remained closed off. Once the smoke cleared, Bryant Grigsby and Peter Jenniskens repaired the damage.
2020, July 27 - Martin Towner reports that CAMS Australia is back online now plugs have been replaced at Curtin University and the power supply of the PC at Bindoon was repaired. The PC was returned by Daniel Busan.
2020, July 25 - Mohammad Odeh reports maintenance of the UACN stations is completed.
2020, July 23 - Marcelo de Cicco reports that three new cameras are contributing data to the EXOSS CAMS network in Brasil. Cameras 1160 (Marco), 1260 (Suzanne) and 1270 (Michael) of the Sao Paulo node are now regularly obtaining orbits.
2020, July 22 - Bryant Grigsby reports maintenance at the Lick Observatory station. Tires of the trailer housing the cameras were inflated. Peter Jenniskens replaced the power supplies to the cameras.
2020, June 19 - CAMS 2010-2016 data were added to the Meteor Shower Portal.
To quickly access those old data, type the date in the top-right "Choose a date" window like "2015.08.12" with points in Chrome, or "2015-08-12" with dashes in Safari.
2020, June 10 - CAMS New Zealand, CAMS Namibia and CAMS Chile detected each a few meteors of a new long-peroid comet shower now called the chi Phoenicids (shower 1036). The shower may be annual. The stream has an inclination of 90 degrees, moving perpendicular to the planet of the planets. Results were announced on CBET 4798.
2020, May 15 - Two new meteor showers were detected today, both caused by long-period comets. Now called the gamma Piscis Asutrinids and the sigma Phoenicids, they were added to the IAU Working List of Meteor Showers as numbers 1034 and 1035. Results were announced on a CBET.
2020, April 29 - CAMS New Zealand detected five orbits of a shower called the rho Phoenicids, visible in video data only just before sunrise in the morning. SAAMER-OS reported strong activity of this shower. Results were reported on CBET.
2020, April 27 - All CAMS networks reporting the detection of an outburst of h-Virginids caused by a Jupiter Family comet. Tim Cooper reports that the shower can be observed visually. The detection was announced on CBET.
2020, April 15 - CAMS Namibia and CAMS BeNeLux detected significant activity of a long-period comet shower, the phi Serpentids. Seven meteors were detected between solar longitudes 25.21 and 25.39 degrees (J2000). The shower is normally a weka annual shower, but in some years the rates appear to be higher than normal. Calculations by Esko Lyytinen showed that the good years allign with the motion of a dust trail, with the next good year expected in 2027. Results were reported on CBET 4756.
2020, March 30 - CAMS Australia and CAMS Chile detected the delta Pavonids of comet 1907 G1 (Grigg-Mellish), which was in outburst last year. We published a paper in Planetary Space Science determining the orbital period of the comet based on the meteor observations.
2020, March 13 - CAMS Namibia (T. Hanke, E. Fahl, and R. van Wyk) detected five meteors from the delta Mensid shower between 18h25m and 23h09m UTC on March 12. At the same time, the SAAMER-OS radar system in Argentina reported an outburst of this shower and identified a likely parent body: minor planet 2006 CS. The detection was reported on CBET 4772.
2020, March 8 - A global pandemic of COVID-19 is underway and calls for stay-at-home and social distancing. Stay safe! We expect intermittent access to the website in the coming months.
2020, January 24 - A bright comet described in a circa 553 A.D. book, "Histories of the Wars", may have been responsible for a brief and unexpected meteor shower in April 2019, so conclude researchers in a paper published this week in Planetary and Space Science. "That comet appears to be on its way back," said meteor astronomer Peter Jenniskens of the SETI Institute. "We don't know whn it will arrive back in the inner solar system, but the meteor shower can help astronomers search for it." [Full story]
2020, January 2 - The year 2019 saw a massive expansion of the CAMS camera network and those behind the scenes (especially Dave Samuels, Steve Rau and Pete Gural) worked hard to keep the network in tip-top shape. As a result, the annual tally of measured meteoroid orbits doubled this year to 360,000!
Orbits measured in 2019 (raw data):
Arkansas (13,630, up from 2,595 last year), Australia (37,837, new since June), BeNeLux (42,083, similar to last year), California (69,924, similar to last year), Chile (51,700, new since July), EXOSS (342, similar to last year), Florida (24,944, up from 5,654 last year), LO-CAMS (49,748, up from 45,230 last year), MA (not in yet), Namibia (18,875, new since September), Northern California (4,582, similar to last year), New Zealand (23,806, up from 3,201 last year), South Africa (9,640, new since June), UAE Camera Network (16,085, up from 10,583 last year).
The year 2019 in headlines:
2019, February 1 - The SETI Institute has received a private donation to help expand the CAMS network. Among the funded projects is regular internet access to Fremont Peak Observatory.
2019, March 19 - Hans Betlem reports that the journal "Radiant, Journal of the Dutch Meteor Society" is available again starting this year.
2019, March 31 - CAMS New Zealand detected an outburst of delta Pavonids of comet C/1907 Grigg-Mellish.
2019, April 11 - Luke Juneau of CAMS Arkansas, and Scott Austin of the University of Central Arkansas in Conway, report that a new station has been installed at the Observatory of UCA in Conway.
2019, April 18 - Andy Howell of CAMS Florida and Erika Kisvarsanyi of the College of Central Florida report that the new 8-camera station is installed on the roof of the science building at the College of Central Florida.
2019, April 22 - CAMS BeNeLux detected an outburst of 15 Bootids (shower IAU#923) tonight.
2019, May 06 - Peter Gural and Paul Roggemans report that the new ready-to-use cameras provided by the Global Meteor Network project have been made CAMS compatible.
2019, May 29 - Luke Juneau reports that the Benton station of CAMS Arkansas now has 16 cameras.
2019, May 28 - Dante Lauretta of NASA's OSIRIS-REX project and the University of Arizona are supporting a significant expansion of the CAMS network in the southern hemisphere in the hope of detecting the meteor shower expected if meteoroids ejected from asteroid Bennu move in sun-centered orbits.
2019, May 30 - Lara, Keanu, and Campbell Duncan are hosting CAMS New Zealand's new third station "Ashburton" in nearby Fairton.
2019, June 14 - Martin Towner and Phil Bland of Curtin University report that the first two CAMS Stations of the new Australia network are in operation.
2019, June 24 - An outburst of June epsilon Ophiuchids (shower 459, JEO) was detected by the CAMS camera network on June 19-26.
2019, June 14 - Tim Cooper reports that CAMS South Africa has achieved "first light".
2019, July 13 - Steve Heathcote of AURA/Cerro Tololo Observatory reports that now all three of the new CAMS Chile network stations are in operation.
2019, August 2 - Martin Towner and Phil Bland report that the third station of the CAMS Australia network at Bindoon is now in operation.
2019, August 13 - Andy Howell reports that a new 8-camera station has come online in the CAMS Florida network.
2019, September 10 - The CAMS boxes supporting the HESS experiment are operating as expected. The station in Windhoek is hosted by Elize Fahl, that at HESS by Toni Hanke, and the station in Rehoboth is hosted by Rynault van Wyk.
2019, September 12 - Paul Roggemans reports that MeteorNews now has an article on the record-breaking August observations by CAMS Benelux.
2019, September 22 - Eric Egland reports that the video cables at Fremont Peak Observatory were replaced today.
2019, October 31 - Tim Beck reports that the Kincade fire was stopped less than a kilometer from his home in Windsor.
2019, November 15 - Peter Jenniskens reports that CAMS cameras have detected an outburst of Phoenicids from comet Blanpain since November 12, which may still be ongoing.
2019, November 22 - The alpha Monocerotid outburst ("the unicorn shower") was observed by the CAMS EXOSS network. CAMS Florida (coordinated by Andy Howell) measured the orbits of 49 alpha Monocerotid meteors in 80-90 percent clear skies from 04h38m to 05h37m UTC. The peak time was at 05h02m UTC.
2019, December 12 - Mohammad Odeh reports that station UACN2 is back online at a new site closer to Abu Dhabi.
2019, December 23 - Mohammad Odeh reports that the UACN picked up significant Ursid activity in the night of December 22/23.
READ MORE on these stories in the News Archive below.
2020, January 1 - Happy New Year! Below is the final CAMS map of 2019, showing the natural fireworks on New Year's Eve. It has over 700 meteors plotted. The December Comae Berenicids (29 meteors) are the dominant shower, but several other showers are detected also, including early Quadrantids.