Another recovery attempt on C/2010 X1 (Elenin)

Today, we imaged again the field of C/2010 X1 (Elenin) remotely, from the GRAS network (Mayhill station, NM). We used two scopes, nearly simultaneously: the 254mm, f/3.4 reflector + CCD, and the 0.1m, f/5 APO refractor + CCD.

The first observing session, on 2011 Oct. 21.3861 UT, through the 10" reflector (15x20sec, unfiltered exposures, scale 1.6"/px, field of view 59'x40'), provided no obvious moving objects in the field of view.

The second observing session with the APO refractor, was scheduled on two separate slots, spaced by about 2h, on 2011 Oct. 21.38392 and Oct. 21.47579. The first sequence was a stacking of 9x30sec, the second was 11x30 sec (unfiltered exposures, scale 3.5"/px, field of view 3.9 degx2.6 deg). Blinking the two fields, we found something moving on the sky background (moonlight interference).

If this *extremely* faint and diffuse blob of light is not an artefact (stray light reflection, ghost image, etc.), it is very close to C/2010 X1 ephemerids position, and it seems to moves with the appropriate proper motion.

Tentatively we measured a 14'x8' (kind of) extremely faint cloud, elongated toward PA 300.

The provisional astrometry we obtained from these two set of data is listed below (very difficult measurement, since there isn't any obvious condensation):

OBS E. Guido, G. Sostero, N. Howes
MEA E. Guido, G. Sostero. N. Howes
TEL 0.10-m f/5 reflector + CCD
ACK MPCReport file updated 2011.10.21 16.54.10
   CK10X010 KC2011 10 21.38392 07 55 08.81 +28 41 56.3          x.xx N      H06
   CK10X010 KC2011 10 21.47579 07 53 48.16 +28 45 45.0          x.xx N      H06

We encourage other observers to confirm or refute this possible find we made, with their own observations/images. We suggest the use of wide-field, fast focal ratio scopes, possibly under very good sky conditions.

UPDATE October 22, 2011

After our request to other observers to try to confirm our find, we have received the following images and animation by fellow observers that seems to confirm the presence of this faint and diffuse "cloud" moving at the same speed and PA of the comet C/2010 X1 (Elenin) very close to C/2010 X1 ephemerids position.

The image above  by Rolando Ligustri obtained remotely from New Mexico on October 22, 2011 (the image processing was particularly forced to highlight the faint nebulosity)