EAS Publications Series
Volume 16, 2005Teaching and Communicating Astronomy – JENAM'04
|Page(s)||129 - 133|
|Published online||14 January 2006|
A. Ortiz-Gil and V. Martínez (eds)
EAS Publications Series, 16 (2005) 129-133
The Spanish Fireball Network: Popularizing Interplanetary Matter
Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), USA
2 Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA-CSIC), Granada, Spain
3 Laboratorio Astrofísica Espacial y Física Fundamental (LAEFF), Madrid, Spain
4 Departament Química Inorgànica, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain
5 Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain
6 Observatori Astronòmic, Universitat de València, Spain
In order to increase in Spain the social interest in the study of interplanetary matter (asteroids, comets and meteoroids) we created the Spanish Photographic Meteor Network (SPMN) in 1997. This network has been dedicated to studying interplanetary matter with participation of researchers from three universities (Universitat Jaume I, Universitat de Barcelona and Universitat de València), the Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya (IEEC) and the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía and it is also supported by the Atmospheric Sounding Station at El Arenosillo (INTA-CEDEA) and by the Experimental Station La Mayora (EELM-CSIC). In order to promote the participation of amateurs, our homepage (www.spmn.uji.es) presents public information about our research explains how amateur astronomers can participate in our network. In this paper we give some examples of the social role of a Fireball Network in order to give a coherent explanation to bright fireball events. Moreover, we also discuss the role of this kind of research project as a promoter of amateur participation and contribution to science. In fact, meteor astronomy can become an excellent area to form young researchers because systematic observation of meteors using photographic, video and CCD techniques has become one of the rare fields in astronomy in which amateurs can work together with professionals to make important contributions. We present here some results of the campaigns realized from the formation of the network. Finally, in a new step of development of our network, the all-sky CCD automatic cameras will be continuously detecting meteors and fireballs from four stations located in the Andalusia and Valencian communities by the end of 2005. Additionally, during important meteor showers we plan to develop fireball spectroscopy using medium field lenses.
© EAS, EDP Sciences, 2005
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