Seminar: CPS Seminar/Special Seminar Department of Planetology, Kobe University
date: 2017 September 1(Fri)16:30-
room: Kobe University Rokkodai Campus The Z Building for Graduate School Science ,103 Seminar room
speaker: Junichi Watanabe (Vice-Director General ,National Astronomical Observatory of Japan)
organizer: Fumihiko Usui
title: Chasing a mysterious meteor shower
abstract: The Japanese Antarctic expedition ship "Soya" encountered a sudden outburst of meteor shower at Indian ocean on the way to the South Pole on December 5, 1956. More than 500 bright meteors appeared within an hour, and it was named "Phoenicid meteor shower" from the location of the radiation point (the point in the sky, from which (to an observer) meteors appear to originate). But it was full of mystery in a strange thing. This meteor shower has never appeared after the first witness.The possible mother comet of this meteor shower was believed to be a comet D/Blanpain of the period of 5.1 years, but this comet was also missing after the first discovery in 1819. Therefore, it was called as a meteor shower of "illusion" in this way.

In 2005, discovery of a near Earth asteroid 2003WY25 offered the key which solves the reason of "illusion". We succeeded to explain why it displayed a big outburst only in 1956, and why we could not see any more activity since that time, on the basis of the application of the latest “dust trail theory” to the possible parent object,2003WY25.Moreover, it was revealed that favorable condition of the appearance was expected in 2014. We performed the observations as expeditions to the Spain Canary Islands and United States east coast because the peak time of predicted appearance was the daytime in Japan (8:00-10:00 JST).Does it appear? I will introduce the latest result together with the significance of this research as a new tool for studying physical evolution of comets.
keywords: Small Solar System Bodies, Comets, Meteors