Warning: session_start() [function.session-start]: open(/home/content/96/12521296/tmp/sess_n0mnnbfmj7mq0o8teb556uqhm0, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in /home/content/96/12521296/html/display_article.php on line 2

Warning: session_start() [function.session-start]: Cannot send session cookie - headers already sent by (output started at /home/content/96/12521296/html/display_article.php:2) in /home/content/96/12521296/html/display_article.php on line 2

Warning: session_start() [function.session-start]: Cannot send session cache limiter - headers already sent (output started at /home/content/96/12521296/html/display_article.php:2) in /home/content/96/12521296/html/display_article.php on line 2
Comet C-2011 L4 Pan-STARRS  @psychohistorian.org

Comet C-2011 L4 Pan-STARRS

posted: 2104 days ago, on Tuesday, 2012 Aug 21 at 15:26
tags: astronomy, comets.

Comet C-2011 L4 Pan-STARRS, set for greatness in 2013, is a dim patch in Libra at the moment.

C/2011 L4 was discovered on 2011 June 06 with the Pan-STARRS 1 telescope at Mount Haleakala, Hawaii. Glowing feebly at 19th magnitude, it wasn't much to write home about. However, the orbit of the comet is set to make it a winner. Seiichi Yoshida of the Weekly Information about Bright Comets website says that C/2011 L4 (PanSTARRS) "is expected to be a great comet of -1 mag in 2013 spring." Tim Cooper, ASSA Comet and Meteor Section Director, writes: "This comet may well become a bright naked eye comet during 2013. However it will then be a northern object and not well placed for observers in southern Africa."

Pan-STARRS, an acronym for "Panoramic Survey Telescope & Rapid Response System", is a wide-field imaging dream-machine. At the moment, Pan-STARRS consists of a single telescope, PS1, which has been in constant operation since 2010 and has already delivered good science. It has a 1.8-m diameter mirror and is equipped with an impressive CCD - the largest one in the world at the moment. The camera has 60 detectors, and each detector has 4872 x 4824 pixels. That is an incredible 1400 million pixels! The pixel size is 10 micron and the total field of view of the array is 7 square degrees. Gosh. That's like having 176 of my EOS 60D's working together. Except that the PS1 Giga Pixel Camera (as it is called) is a science-grade tool with a serious telephoto lens.

To find out more nitty-gritty about Pan-STARRS and learn about the science it has done hop over to arXiv or visit the Pan-STARRS homepage.

A short item about the comet can be found on space.com: Bright New Comet Promises Skywatching Treat in 2013 (posted 2012 March 30).

Seiichi Yoshida's essential Weekly Information about Bright Comets website has a special page for C/2011 L4 (PanSTARRS).

Comet C-2011 L4 Pan-STARRS

2012 August 18, 21:36:50 SAST.

Comet position: RA 14h 59m 59s, Dec -25 03.4'

Telescope: 80mm f/6 APO on a CGEM mount.

Camera: Unguided 30-second exposure, Canon 60D, ISO 6400.

2012 August 18, 21:36:50 SAST

Telescope: 80mm f/6 APO on a CGEM mount.

Camera: Unguided 30-second exposure, Canon 60D, ISO 6400.

By: Brett du Preez and Auke Slotegraaf

2012 August 20, 19:06:44 SAST

Telescope: 10-inch LX 200

Camera: Unguided 86-second exposure, Canon 30D, ISO 1600.

By: Kos Coronaios

nothing more to see. please move along.


Warning: Unknown: open(/home/content/96/12521296/tmp/sess_n0mnnbfmj7mq0o8teb556uqhm0, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in Unknown on line 0

Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct () in Unknown on line 0