Tag Archives: Markazi Province

Watching Perseids in Iran (Photos)

The Perseids is a prolific meteor shower visible from mid-July each year, that stretches along the orbit of the comet Swift–Tuttle. The cloud consists of particles ejected by the comet as it travels on its 133-year orbit. The meteors were named Perseids because the point from which they appear to come, called the radiant, lies in the constellation Perseus.

Although they can be seen all across the sky, they are primarily visible in the Northern Hemisphere. The peak in activity is between August 9th to 14th. During the peak, the rate of meteors reaches 60 or more per hour. Most Perseids burn up in the atmosphere while at heights above 80km.

The earliest record of Perseid activity comes from the Chinese annals, where it is said that in 36 AD “more than 100 meteors flew thither in the morning.” Numerous references appear in Chinese, Japanese and Korean records throughout the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th centuries.

Perseids seen in Darbid and Khoravand. Darbid is a village in Yazd Province, 40km from the city of Yazd. Khoravand is a village in Markazi Province, 70km from Arak.

In Europe, the first known observation is from the year 811 and the first known written record is from “Introduction a la Philosophie naturelle” by Dutch scientist Pieter van Musschenbroek in 1762, where he states that the increased August meteor activity is a recurring event. In 1835, Belgian astronomer Adolphe Quetelet identified the shower as emanating from the constellation Perseus. In 1866, after the perihelion passage of Swift-Tuttle in 1862, the Italian astronomer Giovanni Virginio Schiaparelli discovered the link between meteor showers and comets.

The Perseids is the most famous of all meteor showers. Due to its summertime appearance, it tends to provide the majority of meteors seen by non-astronomy enthusiasts.

Sources: Wikipedia | Perseids, meteorshowersonline.comTasnim News Agency, Borna News, Wikipedia | Khoravand, Wikipedia | Darbid

Iran’s Markazi Province: Mahallat, the capital of flowers

Located in Markazi Province, almost 300km south west of Tehran, Mahallat was in ancient times an important location for Zoroastrianism. There are remains of Hellenistic architecture from Alexander the Great’s time as well as fire temple ruins dated from the Zoroastrianism era.

Today, the city is famous for its large flower gardens and hold a flower festival every September; some even call Mahallat ‘Holland of Iran’. Professional floriculture in the city dates back to the late 1920’s: A simple worker named Yahyakhan learned about growing flowers from his Dutch foreman in Tehran and took the knowledge with him to his birthplace, Mahallat.

The art of growing flowers was promoted and expanded by Yahyakhan and was later pursued by others. Eight years ago florists of Mahallat won a gold medal for their fresh gladiolus at an international exhibition held in Osaka, Japan.

Photos of Mahallat’s Daisies Festival, with more than 600 varieties of flowers, in November 2015

The city is one of the major producers and exporters of flowers in Iran. Out of 35,500 inhabitants, 40 percent are either growers or sellers of flowers or engaged in jobs that are indirectly associated with the flower industry. The region is also the top Chrysanthemums producer in the country, Mahallat’s florists plant 28 million Chrysanthemums annually and from 172 million flowers produced anually the city exports 6 million.

Mahallat also has the country’s largest cactus farm. Cactuses of diverse shapes and colors are found here. The city is an oasis and has a cold climate with strong winds during spring and summer.

Sources: Mehr News Agency, Wikipedia | Mahallat, IRIB, Iran Daily

Photos: Nakhcheer cave, approximately 70 million years old limestone cave in Iran

Nakhcheer or Chal-Nakhjir is a cave situated in Markazi Province of Iran. It is a limestone cave approximately 70 million years old.  It was discovered in 1989 and registered as a national monument in 2001. Its interior is made of crystals, dolomite sediments, stalactites and stalagmites.

More fascinating pictures: Payvand News of Iran | Photos: Nakhcheer cave