Friday, October 3, 2008


IAUC nr. 8988, published on 2008, Oct. 2, announces the discovery of another comet (his fifth) by Andrea Boattini, named P/2008 T1 (BOATTINI). This magnitude object has been found in Pisces, during the Catalina Sky Survey search, with a 1.5-m reflector. The discoverer reported a fairly condesed coma about 10-arcsec in diameter, and a fan-shaped tail nearly 1 arcmin long, in PA ranging 245-275 deg. After its posting on the Minor Planet Center's NEO-Confirmation Page, several observers confirmed its cometary nature, remarking the presence of the above mentioned broad fan tail toward West-Southwest. We confirmed it remotely from Mayhill (NM) through a 0.25-m, f/3.4 reflector + CCD around October 2.4. Eighty stacked 60-s unfiltered CCD exposures show a coma about 10" in diameter and a broad, fan-shaped tail about 40" toward p.a. 244 deg. Click on the image below for a bigger version.

Preliminary orbital elements published by the Minor Planet Center on M.P.E.C. 2008-T30:

provides a solution that points toward a "Jupiter family" object, with perihelion on February 2008 (e=0.29, q~ 3.02 AU, i~ 2.1 deg). Under these circumstances, it appears that this comet has experienced a close encounter with Jupiter around June 2002. In the next future, P/2008 T1 will gradually decrease its brightness, staying not far from the ecliptic for several months to came.

by Ernesto Guido, Giovanni Sostero and Paul Camilleri

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