Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Comet: C/2013 P4 (PANSTARRS)

Cbet nr. 3638, issued on 2013, August 26, announces the discovery of a new comet (discovery magnitude ~20.8) by professional survey F51 Pan-STARRS 1 (Haleakala) on CCD images obtained with 1.8-m Ritchey-Chretien on August 15, 2013. After posting on the Minor Planet Center's NEOCP webpage, other CCD astrometrists have commented on the object's cometary appearance. The new comet has been designated C/2013 P4 (PANSTARRS).

We performed follow-up measurements of this object, while it was still on the neocp. Stacking of 9 R-filtered exposures, 60-sec each, obtained remotely, from the Faulkes Telescope South (Siding Spring) on 2013, August 26.5, through a 2.0-m f/10.0 Ritchey-Chretien + CCD (operated by Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network), shows that this object is a comet: sharp central condensation surrounded by a coma about 15" in diameter elongated in PA 190.

Below our confirmation image. Click on it for a bigger version.

M.P.E.C. 2013-Q34 assigns the following preliminary parabolic orbital elements to comet C/2013 P4: T 2015 June 23.59; e= 1.0; Peri. = 157.50; q = 4.40;  Incl.= 4.33

by Ernesto Guido, Kris Rochowicz, Nick Howes

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