NELIOTA (NEO Lunar Impacts and Optical TrAnsients) is an ESA-funded lunar monitoring project, which aims to determine the size-frequency distribution of small Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) via detection of impact flashes on the surface of the Moon. A prime focus, high-speed, twin-camera system providing simultaneous observations in two photometric bands at a rate of 30 frames-per-second on the 1.2 m Kryoneri telescope of the National Observatory of Athens was commissioned for this purpose. A dedicated software processes the images and automatically detects candidate lunar impact flashes, which are then validated by an expert user. The four year observing campaign began in February 2017 and has so far detected more than 40 lunar impact events. The software routinely detects satellites, which typically appear as streaks or dots crossing the lunar disk. To avoid confusing these events with real flashes, we check different available catalogs with spacecraft orbital information and exclude spacecraft identifications.
- Pub Date:
- January 2019
- Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astrophysics
- 12 pages, 17 figures. Proceedings of the "ESA NEO and Debris Detection Conference -Exploiting Synergies-", held in ESA/ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany, 22-24 January 2019