Thursday, November 5, 2015

New Comet: C/2015 V2 (JOHNSON)

CBET nr. 4161, issued on 2015, November 05, announces the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~17.1) by J. A. Johnson on CCD images obtained with the Catalina Sky Survey's 0.68-m Schmidt telescope on Nov. 3.5 UT. The new comet has been designated C/2015 V2 (JOHNSON).

I performed follow-up measurements of this object, while it was still on the neocp. Stacking of 12 unfiltered exposures, 120 seconds each, obtained remotely on 2015, November 04.4 from H06 (iTelescope network - New Mexico) through a 0.43-m f/6.8 astrograph + CCD + f/4.5 focal reducer, shows that this object is a comet: compact coma nearly 10 arcsec in diameter elongated toward PA 230.

My confirmation image (click on it for a bigger version)

M.P.E.C. 2015-V44 assigns the following preliminary parabolic orbital elements to comet C/2015 V2: T 2017 Feb. 14.70; e= 1.0; Peri. =  188.19; q = 0.93;  Incl.= 41.14

Below you can see a graph generated using the software Orbitas and showing the C/2015 V2 predicted magnitude (in red) versus its elongation from the Sun. Click on the image for a bigger version. (A word of caution: as always with comets, the future magnitudes reported here are only indicative and based on a very preliminary orbit).

by Ernesto Guido

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