|Wednesday||17 December 2003||2:59pm MST||2003-12-17 UTC 2159|
Comet news: MPEC 2003-Y16 today announces comet P/2003 XD10 (LINEAR-NEAT), with the first LINEAR observations shown from November 20th and 4-5 December, and NEAT observations from its Mt. Palomar telescope on December 14th. This object travels a path between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, and the MPEC has perihelion on September 16th. Peter Birtwhistle, who participated in the confirmation process for three nights, has posted a P/2003 XD10 page with an image.
Quadrantids: As reported earlier, 2003 EH1 has been identified with the Quadrantid Meteor Shower by Peter Jenniskens. His IAUC info and preprint (then 23Kb now 512Kb PDF) are now available from NASA/Ames. Starting with the current MPC orbit calculated from EH1's short observational arc, Pasquale Tricarico has used ORSA to create an animation showing an 1842 encounter with Jupiter that shifted 2003 EH1's perihelion from just inside to just outside of Earth's orbit. Accompanying charts show other orbit-changing Jupiter encounters as recently as 1972.
Yarkovsky effect: Sky & Telescope has an article today, "The Asteroid and the Pea," about the Yarkovsky effect, with some nice illustration work. Other recent news links on this topic can be found in the Major News Index.
The Wednesday Daily Orbit Update MPEC has observation of 2003 WY153 by Great Shefford Observatory in England yesterday morning, more than doubling the observational arc for this small object, which hadn't been reported since Great Shefford last caught it early on December 7th. Today NEODyS and JPL raised their risk assessments for the one low-rated impact solution each is carrying for the year 2071.
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