Observations of lunar sodium were made on November 16-18, 1997 at
Asi ago and Mount Lemmon Observatories. A small enhancement was
observed, and we suggest that it was related to the Leonid shower.
Visual observations by members of the Association of Lunar and Planetary
Observers and the North American Meteor Network show a peak, a
few hours wide, at about 12:50 UT on the 17th. The possible
enhancement of the lunar Na appears to last at least three days, and
must be associated with a consdiderably more extended cloud of particles
than that responsible for the bri ght visual meteors. The
circumstances of the 1997, 1998 and 1999 events are discussed. Large
showers may occur in 1998 and 1999; the 1998 one occurs too close to
New Moon for good atmospheric observations, but if the extended, faint
shower is also enhanced the corresponding lunar Na should be observable
for a considerably longer period.
ICARUS, In Press, August, 1998.