Father of Meteor Allsky Networks, Richard Spalding died Feb 8.
[Excerpts from an article by Tom Dorman.]
Dick passed away Wed, Feb 8 2017, after battling multiple heart issues this past year. Dick was the Founder of the SkySentinel Allsky Network (Sandia National Laboratories) and was instrumental in setting up and running the meteor fireball camera Systems in the U.S. and around the world. Allsky camera systems can now be bought off the shelf but back in the 1990’s Dick was giving the camera systems to willing amateurs in support of the North America fireball network. (Locally he sent Allsky camera systems to a number of nodes in the BC Meteor network in Canada in 2011. ) Dick gave graciously of his time and always was willing to answer questions from even lowly amateurs such as ourselves.
These early camera systems gave a better understanding of meteors, fireball events, meteor showers and their origins. Some of the early fireball cameras that Dick gave out to many amateurs were through DOD grants but many were paid for out of his own money.
Lindley Johnson, Planetary Defense Officer at NASA wrote: “He was a great man as well as an insightful scientist and a hero to us all, albeit largely unsung. It is nice to see this latest paper come out and know that he was active to the end in uncovering the mysteries of nature. He will of course be greatly missed, but I hope he was heartened in his last days by seeing us finally making progress in getting bolide reports instituted into our warning infrastructure. In his memory, we will redouble our efforts to make full use of what he had shown us of what is possible to better understand the science of natural objects entering our atmosphere in service of better protection of all human populations and our collective society.”
Source: NASA CAMS: cams.seti.org