Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Possible Nova in Ophiuchus

Following the posting on the Central Bureau's Transient Object Confirmation Page about a possible Nova in Oph (TOCP Designation: PNV J17260708-2551454) we performed some follow-up of this object remotely through the 0.10-m f/5 reflector + CCD from MPC code H06 (Mayhill station, NM) of iTelescope network.

On our images taken on 2012, March 27.5 we can confirm the presence of an optical counterpart with unfiltered CCD magnitude 10.9 at coordinates:

R.A. = 17 26 07.02, Decl.= -25 51 42.1

(equinox 2000.0; USNO-B1.0 catalogue reference stars).

Our confirmation image:

While below you can see an animation showing a comparison between our confirmation image and the archive POSS2/UKSTU plate (R Filter - 1997). Click on the thumbnail for a bigger version:

UPDATE - MARCH 29, 2012

According to Cbet 3072 issued on March 28, observers at Koyama Astronomical Observatory (KAO) and at Okayama University of Science (OUS) have obtained a spectra of this variable star. An H-alpha emission line can be seen in the spectrum. H_beta, Fe II, and O I 777.4-nm are also visible. These features suggest that the object is an "Fe II-type" classical nova. This nova, designated NOVA OPHIUCHI 2012, has been discovered by Hideo Nishimura (Miyawaki, Kakegawa, Shizuoka-ken) on three 13-s frames (limiting mag 13.5) taken on Mar. 25.789 UT with a Canon 200-mm f/3.2 lens and a Canon EOS 5D Digital Camera mounted on a Takahashi EM100 equatorial telescope at Gomyo, Kakegawa, Japan.

by Ernesto Guido, Giovanni Sostero & Nick Howes

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