A population of small refractory meteoroids in asteroidal orbits

M. Campbell-Brown

Planetary and Space Science
available online 2 April 2015


More than 7000 two-station meteors observed with two different video systems, both part of the Canadian Automated Meteor Observatory, have been analysed. The more sensitive (limiting magnitude +6.5) influx system shows a significant population of slow meteors with begin heights under 86 km, while the less sensitive (limiting magnitude +4) tracking system shows many more fast meteors ablating at high altitudes. The low, slow population has asteroidal orbits with low inclinations and moderate eccentricities, and radiants which are not, in general, associated with the sporadic sources. In spite of their low begin heights, which imply that they are strong and refractory, the meteors have early peaked light curves which are not predicted by classical ablation theory for non-fragmenting objects.