The Draconids, also known as the Giacobinids, after the parent comet, are a variable meteor shower, the parent body being comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, occasionally the Earth passes through denser clumps of material from 21P/Giacobini-Zinner and these have produced significant meteors.

Previous meteor activity
observed ZHR / comments

1933 STORM
I counted 200 meteors in two minutes, and then counting became impossible. The fire-stars became as thick as the flakes of a snowstorm. Instead of twos and threes they came in flocks and gusts. The sky was thick with them wherever one looked.” Rev. W. F. A. Ellison (Former Director of Armagh Observatory); Belfast Telegraph on Wednesday, October 11, 1933

1946 STORM
1953 Outburst
1985 Outburst
1998 Outburst
60 to 600 predicted

2011 Observations

Members of Crayford Manor House Astronomical Society observed this event from the UK and Turkey, visual observations from the UK were hampered by cloud and the only successful results from the UK by members of the society were from radio observations.

The chart below shows the automated meteor count showing the peak from 19:45 – 20:15 on the 8th October 2011, the sporadic rate is ~24 per hour.

Chart showing the results of automated radio observations from Simon Dawes.



This screen shot shows time (past at the bottom of the page, present at the top of the page) and the power of the signal at different frequencies, on the receiver these manifest themselves as whistles – see below.

This recording contains numerous meteors, the largest and longest at around 53s