IAUC nr.8973, published on 2008, September 8th, announces the discovery by the LINEAR sky survey, of a new comet, named C/2008 R3 (LINEAR). It has been found in Hercules on 2008, Sept. 7 at about magnitude 18; several observers performing its follow-up, found signs of cometary activity (coma diameter ranging from 8 ti 13-arcsec, tail of 15 to 20-arcsec toward PA about 130-deg).
Initially we observed it with the 0.30-m f/5.8 reflector at Trunkey, N.S.W., Australia, on Sept. 8.44-8.48, obsering a small coma about 12-arcsec in diameter. Further observations were obtained on 2008, Sept. 8.8 through a 0.45-m, f/4.4 reflector + CCD at the Remanzacco Observatory (Italy), where a deep stacking showed the presence of a coma and a broad tail toward South-East.
Here we post an animation (12 frames, 5 minutes exposure time each) obtained during such observing session:
Preliminary orbital elements from the Minor Planet Center (http://tinyurl.com/4577dd) assumes its orbit as parabolic, with an inclination of nearly 43-deg. Perihelion will be reached in November 2008, at r about 1.9 AU from the Sun. This comet is expected to reach a maximum magnitude of about 17, at its perihelion.
by P. Camilleri, G. Sostero and Ernesto Guido