Monday, June 16, 2014

New Comet: P/2014 L2 (NEOWISE)

Cbet nr. 3901, issued on 2014, June 15, announces the discovery of a comet (~ magnitude 16.5) by the Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) team on images taken with the NEOWISE satellite on 2014, June 07.4. The new comet has been designated P/2014 L2 (NEOWISE).

We performed follow-up measurements of this object, while it was still on the neocp. Stacking of 12 unfiltered exposures, 60-sec each, obtained remotely on 2014, June 15.4 from H06 (iTelescope network, New Mexico) through a 0.50-m f/6.8 astrograph + CCD + f/4.5 focal reducer, shows that this object is a comet with a tail nearly 15" long in PA 250 with coma about 8" in diameter.

Our confirmation image (click on it for a bigger version)

M.P.E.C. 2014-L61 assigns the following preliminary elliptical orbital elements to comet P/2014 L2: T 2014 Aug. 4.59; e= 0.43; Peri. = 190.6; q = 2.11;  Incl.= 5.20

by Ernesto Guido, Nick Howes & Martino Nicolini

Monday, June 9, 2014

Update on comet C/2012 K1 (PANSTARRS)

C/2012 K1 (PANSTARRS) is a comet discovered on 17 May 2012 (see CBET circular 3112 & MPEC 2012-K36) in two r-band 40-s exposures taken with the 1.8-m Pan-STARRS 1 telescope at Haleakala (MPC code F51). 

The comet is currently at visual magnitude ~ 8.5 and it will reach the perihelion (closest approach to the Sun) on 27 August 2014 at a distance of 1.05 AU (1 AU = ~150 million kilometers) from the Sun. Comet C/2012 K1 is expected to brighten up to mag ~6-7 in mid-October 2014 (with an elongation of about 75-80 degree from the Sun). Below you can see the light curve (click on it for a bigger version).

Credit: Seiichi Yoshida

While below you can find our most recent image of this comet obtained on 03 June 2014 through the 2-meter Liverpool Telescope. Click on the image for a bigger version. 

by Ernesto Guido, Nick Howes & Martino Nicolini