The ICQ Comet Information Website
Primary and secondary information on comets and observing comets:
This is a key place to begin looking for
useful and accurate information regarding news, observations, orbital
data, designations and names, and good links regarding comets and related
topics [sponsored by the International Comet Quarterly (ICQ)].
Special dated news items:
- ALERT! Due to excessive spam-e-mailing, our Computation Facility
took drastic measures on August 14 to block e-mail from many e-mail
extensions. Contributors of cometary observations to the ICQ, the CBAT,
and the MPC need to be aware of this: if you do not have a .edu,
.gov, or .org extension, your e-mail may not reach us
please read this).
- There is a special, dated experiment being undertaken now that
experienced visual comet observers are urged to take part in, in order to
get an understanding of the spectral response of the human eye for
astronomical photometry. The
survey is being conducted by the AAVSO,
and the results are due by 1998 September 22. [The AAVSO web site has been
down Sept. 17-18; interested individuals can get hardcopy copies of the charts
and instructions by postal mail from AAVSO, 25 Birch St., Cambridge, MA 02138-1205,
U.S.A.; it may be possible to get the material via ftp on the Internet or
via fax, and you can contact the AAVSO via e-mail at AAVSO@AAVSO.ORG]
- The Edgar
Wilson Award for comet discoveries has been announced. [6/11/98]
52P/Harrington-Abell is currently in major outburst near total visual mag 11-12
(some 10 magnitudes brighter than predicted; note that only a handful of rough
photographic magnitudes are on the record from large telescopes during 1955-1975,
but it definitely appears to be many magnitudes brighter than normal).
There are unconfirmed reports that the comet has split. [8/19/98]
- The brightest comets right now are
(total visual mag 8.5-9.5),
O1 (Hale-Bopp) (mag 10-10.5), and
P1 (Williams) (near mag 9, close to the sun) [10/26/98]
- Recent comet discoveries include
and 1998 U3.
- Recent comet recoveries include
K6 = P/1990 UL3 (Shoemaker-Levy 2), and
O1 = P/1991 V2 (Shoemaker-Levy 7).
Additional information on comets (and related phenomena):
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