Urban Meteor Map: a map-based forecast of hourly rates for visual observers

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientific


The visible rate of meteors is dependent on various local viewing condition during shower peak nights. The interrelationship of the visible fraction of the night sky, radiant elevation and effects of the light pollution on sky brightness confounds outreach efforts to manage realistic expectations for visual meteor observations by the public. The Urban Meteor Map offers a map-based forecast of hourly rates to help make the effects of local viewing conditions more insightful. The project generates maps based on raster data for parameters in the Zenithal Hourly Rate formula. A Digital Surface Model (DSM) covering the Netherlands was used to generate maps of the visible percentage of the sky. At 5 m resolution this DSM offers insights into obstruction by buildings, vegetation and topography. To incorporate effects of light pollution, a national sky brightness map for cloudless nights was converted into Naked Eye Limiting Magnitudes (NELM). Combined with known shower parameters such as population index and radiant height, maps were generated with hourly rates forecasts at local and national scales. Ultimately, observing conditions will remain dependent on the individual observers, their night adaptation and local light interference. The Urban Meteor Map aims to helps raise awareness for the effects of light pollution, and thus promotes exploration of local living environment to seek the best viewing spots for meteor showers.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the IMC, Redu, 2023
EditorsUrška Pajer, Cis Verbeeck
PublisherInternational Meteor Organization
ISBN (Electronic)978-2-87355-036-3
Publication statusPublished - 2024


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