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Michael O'Connell

Monasterevin, Co Kildare, Ireland

Camera / Lens Combination:

Watec 902H2 Supreme & Computar 8mm f0.8, Az 116.0, Ev 33.9

Watec 902H2 Supreme & Burle 6mm f0.75 500l/mm Grating, Az 138.1. Ev 38.6



Michael O'Connell operates two meteor camera systems and a radio-based meteor detection system from Monasterevin, Co Kildare, Ireland. Both cameras face towards the south-east providing ablation layer coverage over the Irish Sea and Wales. The spectral camera consists of a Watec 902H2 Supreme (1/2" sensor), Burle 6mm f0.75 auto-iris lens and a 500 lines/mm non-blazed diffraction grating while the normal optical camera consists of a Watec 902H2 Supreme (1/2" sensor) with a Computar 8mm f0.8 auto-iris lens. The cameras are installed in heated Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) enclosures affixed to a garden wall and connected to computers in the adjacent observatory (Astroshot Observatory, MPC Designation: I87).

The radio system uses a 3-element Yagi antenna and a FUNcube Dongle Pro+ to receive transmissions from the GRAVES radar system at Dijon, France which are reflected through forward scatter from meteor ion trails in the upper atmosphere. A live plot of meteors detected via radio along with weather station data from Astroshot Observatory is available online at www.astroshot.com

Michael is a former chairperson of both the Irish Federation of Astronomical Societies (IFAS) and Midlands Astronomy Club. Michael assists Dunsink Observatory, Dublin with organising the annual solar astronomy conference 'Solarfest' which is held in conjunction with IFAS, Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies and Trinity College Dublin Astrophysics Research Group.