COBS NEWS Archive

Nov. 29, 2018

A hyperactive comet is approaching Earth

Small but hyperactive Comet 46P/Wirtanen is approaching Earth and could soon become visible to the naked eye. On Dec. 16th, the kilometer-wide ball of dirty ice will be less than 11.5 million km away--making it one of the 10 closest-approaching comets of the Space Age. It already looks magnificent through amateur telescopes.

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Nov. 16, 2018

NASA learns more about interstellar visitor 'Oumuamua

The first known interstellar object to visit our solar system -- named 'Oumuamua -- was detected in October 2017 by Hawaii's Pan-STARRS 1 telescope. But it was too faint for NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope to detect when it looked more than two months after the object's closest approach to Earth in early September. That 'non-detection' puts a new limit on how large the strange object can be, astronomers now report.

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Nov. 12, 2018

New Comet C/2018 V1 (Machholz-Fujikawa-Iwamoto)

CBET 4569 (issued on 2018, November 08) and MPEC 2018-V151 (2018, November 11), announce the discovery of a 10th-magnitude comet by Donald E. Machholz (Colfax, CA, U.S.A) and independently by Shigehisa Fujikawa (Kan'onji, Kagawa, Japan) and Masayuki Iwamoto (Awa, Tokushima, Japan).

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Nov. 04, 2018

Comet tails blowing in the solar wind

Combined observations of Comet McNaught -- one of the brightest comets visible from Earth in the past 50 years -- have revealed new insights on the nature of comets and their relationship with the Sun.

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Oct. 26, 2018

Secret shared by comets and sand crabs

Researchers have found a mechanical connection between sand crab burrow widths and widths of cometary pits using a simple granular experiment.

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Oct. 03, 2018

Comet landscape

On 30 September 2016, ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft came closer than ever to the target it had studied from afar for more than two years, concluding its mission with a controlled impact onto the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67P/C-G).

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Sep. 26, 2018

Gaia finds candidates for interstellar ‘Oumuamua’s home

Using data from ESA’s Gaia stellar surveyor, astronomers have identified four stars that are possible places of origin of ‘Oumuamua, an interstellar object spotted during a brief visit to our Solar System in 2017.

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Sep. 24, 2018

Observation Alert: Extremely bright mag 12.2 outburst of Comet 29P

A second outburst of 29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann has taken place on 2018 09 23.2 +/-0.1 which has raised its brightness from r mag 13.2 to 12.2. This new outburst occurred 2.6 +/-0.2 days after this first event and its current brightness makes it one of the four most intense outbursts in 8 years.

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Sep. 10, 2018

The Comet Observation Database - Observer tools and case study (EPSC2018-644, Berlin 2018)

This paper introduces the main functionality of the COBS database [1, 2] that is of interest to a comet observer, with application to C/2004 R2 (Machholz).

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Sep. 10, 2018

The Comet Observation Database - Structure and content (EPSC 2018-632, Berlin 2018)

The Comet Observation Database (COBS) [1, 2] is a unique web service that enables comet observers to submit, display and analyse comet data in a single location. The service currently represents one of the largest databases of comet observations (containing more than 235,000 observations) and is available to comet observers worldwide.

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