Record making comet P/2016 BA14 Panstarrs: an image (16 Mar. 2016)
While waiting for its historic close encounter next 22 March. at Virtual Telescope we imaged the little comet P/2016 BA14 Panstarrs while it was at 7.9 millions of km from us and approaching.
The image above comes from eight, 120-seconds unfiltered exposures, remotely collected with the PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E robotic unit part of the Virtual Telescope Project. The telescope tracked the apparent motion of the object (9.4″/min) during the exposures. Comet P/2016 BA14 Panstarrs was at only 26 deg and setting at the imaging time and a 61%, bright Moon was high in the sky, 40 deg. apart from the target.
Comet P/2016 BA14 was discovered on 22 Jan. 2016 and soon it was clear that its orbital elements were similar to the ones of comet 252P/Linear, also making a similar close approach on the same hours. Very likely, P/2016 BA14 is a small fragment of 252P.
At Virtual Telescope we scheduled a live coverage of this historic close encounter!
Support The Virtual Telescope Project!
If everyone reading this right now would donate something, our fundraiser would be done in a few days. Please, donate and receive an exclusive, LIMITED EDITION image of potentially hazardous asteroids taken by the Virtual Telescope! specifically made for supporters like you!
donate now (you can adjust the amount later)
This post has already been read 5756 times!