Re: COMET: a ghost of futures past

From: Amara Graps (
Date: Mon Jan 15 2001 - 09:48:55 MST

From:, Fri Jan 12 2001

>And as I recall, Hale-Bopp was a spectacular comet, visible for months at
>least here in the northern hemisphere. I remember seeing it hanging in
>the western sky every night when I was driving. Halley's on the other
>hand was a real washout for us up here.

Damien (to whom Hal was responding, above):

Comet Hale-Bopp was the brightest comet this century.

(I agree with what Hal said above, too.. I used to look out of my
office window at Stanford and see it hanging in the sky, for months)

You can see a series of beautiful images of the comet here:

Hale-Bopp was still being monitored from the Southern Hemisphere,
from several of the telescopes at ESO's Chile observatories
at least through last Spring 2000 (maybe later?).

see here, this abstract from the DPS meeting in Pasadena, October 2000.

 Title: Bits and pieces around Comet Hale-Bopp
 Authors: Tanabe, R.; Watanabe, J.; Boehnhardt, H.;
                     Delahodde, C. E.; Hainaut, O. R.; Rauer, H.;
                     Marchis, F.
 Affiliation: AA(Tokyo Gakugei University), AB(NAO), AE(ESO/Chile),
                     AF(DLR), AG(IAS/Paris)
 Journal: American Astronomical Society, DPS meeting #32, #41.12
 Publication Date: 10/2000
 Origin: AAS
 Abstract Copyright: (c) 2000: American Astronomical Society
 Bibliographic Code: 2000DPS....32.4112T


We are monitoring comet C/1995 O1 (Hale-Bopp) since its passage through
perihelion. The data we present here were obtained from Sep. 1997 till Apr.
2000 on the 1.5m Danish, 2.2m ESO/MPI, 3.6m, NTT, and VLT telescopes at
ESO's observatories. This extensive collection of R frames were processed
and enhanced in order to reveal details in the coma structure.

On various epochs in January and February 1998, while the comet was at
r=7.5AU, secondary condensations were observed at ∼ 15'' ∼= 5.104 km
from the main nucleus, but were not visible anymore in March 1998. These
condensations are accompanied by an independent coma, and are interpreted as
fragments detached from the nucleus.

We will present these data and the enhancement techniques that were used, as
well as discuss the nature and evolution of the fragments, putting them in
the perspective of the secondary nucleus observed by Marchis et al. (1999,
A&A 349, p. 985) using adaptive optics.


********************************************************************* Amara Graps | Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik Interplanetary Dust Group | Saupfercheckweg 1 +49-6221-516-543 | 69117 Heidelberg, GERMANY * ********************************************************************* "Never fight an inanimate object." - P. J. O'Rourke

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