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A Tale of Two Comets!

PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:12 pm
by justin-mccollum
Hello to Everyone not on the HAS Netslyder,

It is I Professor Comet (Mr. Justin McCollum, HAS Program Director) who is the successor of the late great Don Pearce (Captain Comet) has returned to his comet reports after an 18 month gap! My Apologies.

I have for all of you an official comet report on the approach of two comets approaching perigee with the Earth over three day period (20 - 23 March 2016) of comets 252P/LINEAR and P/2016 BA14 (PanSTARRS). These two comets are quite possibly the same object that could have undergone the same gravitational stresses that forced the famous Shoemaker - Levy 9 to torn apart into a couple of dozen fragments.

Comet 252P/LINEAR is not that big only 750 feet (230 meters) across while the size of P/2016 BA14 (PanSTARRS) is uncertain it is likely going to be a much smaller nucleus if it is a fragment of the LINEAR comet. The theory being that the two comets share very similar orbital parameters and come from the same area of the solar system in the domain of the planet Jupiter and are classified as Jovian or Jupiter Comets!

I am realizing a Powerpoint and pdf version of the report, but there is a wonderful animated gif using the JPL Solar System small body browser of the two comets approaching and departing Earth over the time period of 1 March to 1 April. This animated gif does not exist in the pdf version only a snapshot! I have the pdf and ppt version available. If you do not have or use powerpoint please click on the twocomets.gif to see the animated gif of the two comets approach and depart Earth!

I hope everyone enjoys it and I have a backlog of 2014 and 2015 reports that I plan to publish as good reference reports to study in learning more about comets and comet sciences!


Professor Comet
Justin J McCollum