Wednesday, September 12, 2012

New update on comet C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS)

Comet C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS), discovered by Pan-STARRS 1 telescope on Haleakala, Maui, on the night of 2011, June 5-6, will reach perihelion in March 2013 when it will be located only 0.30 AU from the Sun and might become a bright naked eye object ( with a peak magnitude of anywhere from +1 to -1). At its brightest C/2011 L4 will appear only 15° from the Sun.

The comet is now at 3.2 AU from the Sun (m2 ~ 14.0). While visually C/2011 L4 is at m1 ~ 11.

We performed some follow-up measurements of comet C/2011 L4 remotely from the Siding Spring-Faulkes Telescope South on 2012, September 10.4 through a 2.0-m f/10.0 Ritchey-Chretien + CCD. Below you can see our follow-up image (click on it for a bigger version):

Below you can see the lightcurve of comet C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS) collected by Seiichi Yoshida on his comet webpage: 

                                  (Credit: Seiichi Yoshida)

As a comparison, below you can see our image of the comet taken on June 7.4, 2011 just one day after his discovery by Pan-STARRS Survey. The comet was then at 8.2 AU from the Sun (m2 ~ 19.5).

While below there is our image taken on May 18.6, 2012 with the comet at 4.6 AU from the Sun (m2 ~ 15.6).

Here you can read our full past reports about this comet:

by Ernesto Guido, Kris Rochowicz, Nick Howes & Giovanni Sostero

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Only 15 degrees from the Sun... will be very hard to observe especially in countries with climate where clouds and humidity will try to kill this comet...