Sunday26 September 20047:51pm MDT2004-09-27 UTC 0151 last
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The Asteroid/Comet Connection's
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asteroids, comets, and meteors

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Cover: Matthias Busch caught these last images of tiny 2004 RU109 from Starkenburg Observatory in Germany as it sped past Earth late on the 12th, making what is now the seventh closest known approach this year, coming slightly inside the Earth-Moon system the next day. See his “Cover story” below. The animation, created at A/CC from Starkenburg's FITS files, runs 100 times faster than the actual time between frames, crossing a field 18.8' wide (2.51"/pixel). North is up.

Small objects – panel 1/2 Major News for 26 Sept. 2004 back top next  

Small objects
Discovery & follow-up for 20-26 September 2004

Even with the brightening Moon, this past week has been a great one for discovering and tracking small asterids (defined at right). Discoveries of ten were announced, which is the best since March except for last week's dozen, ten more were tracked, and observations of four were reported from July. A total of 33 observing facilities participated in the week's work.

Revised 27 Sept.:  Seven of the discoveries were from LINEAR in New Mexico. One came from the Siding Spring Survey in New South Wales, one was discovered with the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope in Arizona, and one was caught by FMO Project online volunteer Mariusz Kuczewski of Poland, who was reviewing images from the Spacewatch 0.9m telescope. [This report initially credited LINEAR with eight discoveries, counting one that was actually made with the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope.–Ed.]

Caught only afterward, this week's discoveries 2004 SE26 flew past the Earth at 4.9 lunar distances (LD) on the 19th, 2004 SR21 at 4.2 LD on the 20th, and 2004 ST26 came slightly inside the Earth-Moon system late on the 21st, but 2004 SY4 was picked up before it will pass at 8.4 LD next Wednesday.

<< previous report | skip table | Small objects table >>

What’s so big about “small objects?” If an asteroid’s orbit brings it to within 0.05 astronomical units (AU) of Earth's orbit, it is categorized as “potentially hazardous” unless it has an absolute magnitude H greater than 22.0, which corresponds to a diameter on the order of 135 meters/yards. Larger H means less bright, thus smaller size. And 0.05 AU is about 19.5 times the distance between Earth and Moon (0.00256 AU). To be discovered and tracked, such objects usually must come close (a few are Earth’s nearest neighbors, coming closer than the Moon). They are exposed pieces of distant asteroid populations, and they have within their own population tomorrow’s meteors. And their discovery and follow-up represents today’s best amateur and professional asteroid observing work. Diameter & Earth MOID: In the following observation summary table, the stated diameters are rough best estimates from a standard but very inexact H-to-size formula using H (absolute magnitude, or brightness) from the JPL NEO Orbital Elements page, source also for Earth MOID (minimum orbital intersection distance). Current Minor Planet Center H is also given, along with the original H from each object's discovery MPEC. Other sources: Planetary MOIDs are from Lowell Observatory. Priorities and visibilities are from the European Spaceguard Central Node (SCN). And flyby distances and times are from the JPL Close Approach Table. See also the Sormano Observatory SAEL (H>22.0 and Earth MOID<0.015 AU), and NEODyS listings have yet another H calculation.
Small objects – panel 2/2 (table) Major News for 26 Sept. 2004 back top next  

Small object observation summary for 20-26 Sept. 2004

H = absolute magnitude (brightness), from which size is roughly estimated   —   m/yd = meters/yards   —   [cross index]
All objects had observations reported last week. Those on a light-blue background had observations from only before the week.


Object
Estimated
diameter
JPL
H
MPC
H
Discovery
H in MPEC
Earth
MOID
European Spaceguard Central Node
priority/visibility/campaign
2004 OD4
K04O04D
Apollo
14 m/yd26.9327.026.7 2004-O150.001025 AU
2004 OD4 was reported this past week as observed on 21 July with the Australian Natinal University (ANU) 1m telescope, adding 0.438 day to what had been a 3.911-day observation arc.
2004 SR26
K04S26R
Apollo
18 m/yd26.4326.626.7 2004-S530.009774 AU
NEW: 2004 SR26 was discovered on 22 Sept. by LINEAR, after having passed Earth at 4.2 LD at 1714 UT on the 20th. It was confirmed on 23 Sept. by LINEAR and Great Shefford Obs., and on 24 Sept. by Three Buttes Obs. and Sabino Canyon Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S53 of 24 Sept. This object was also observed on 24 Sept. by LINEAR.
2004 ST26
K04S26T
Apollo
18 m/yd26.3726.326.3 2004-S550.000278 AU
NEW: 2004 ST26 was discovered on 23 Sept. by FMO Project online volunteer Mariusz Kuczewski of Poland, who was scanning images from the Spacewatch 0.9m telescope. It was confirmed on 23 Sept. with the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope and by Great Shefford Obs., and on 24 Sept. by Gianluca Masi and Franco Mallia via Southern TIE (SoTIE), the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope, Sabino Canyon Obs., Desert Moon Obs., and Robert Hutsebaut with a Rent-A-Scope telescope. It was announced in MPEC 2004-S55 of 24 Sept., and observations haven't been reported since then. Just before midnight UT on the 21st, 2004 ST26 passed the Earth at 0.956 lunar distance (LD), and just after midnight buzzed the Moon at 0.076 LD. See September 24th cover image and news. This object has an MOID of 0.008 AU with Venus.
2004 SE26
K04S26E
Apollo
24 m/yd25.7525.825.8 2004-S490.006637 AUUrgent, visibility ends 4 Oct.
NEW: 2004 SE26 passed Earth at 4.9 LD at 0910 UT on Sept. 19th. It was discovered on 21 Sept. by LINEAR, was confirmed on 22 Sept. by LINEAR, and on 23 Sept. by Grasslands Obs. and Three Buttes Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S49 of 23 Sept. It hasn't been reported observed since.
2004 SW26
K04S26W
Aten
25 m/yd25.6725.725.7 2004-S580.041449 AU
NEW: 2004 SW26 was discovered on 23 Sept. with the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope, was confirmed on 24 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs., Sabino Canyon Obs., the Spacewatch 1.8m telescope, and Hutsebaut, and was announced in MPEC 2004-S58 that same day, which was also the day it flew past Earth at 16.5 LD. 2004 SW26 has an MOID of 0.027 AU with Mercury.
2004 SA1
K04S01A
Apollo
31 m/yd25.1825.325.0 2004-S200.021245 AUNecessary, visibility ends 3 Oct.
2004 SA1 was observed on 21 and 22 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs., and on 21 Sept. by Farpoint Obs.
2004 SU26
K04S26U
Apollo
39 m/yd24.6924.924.9 2004-S560.018338 AU
NEW: 2004 SU26 passed Earth at 13.5 LD on 20 Sept., and was discovered on 23 Sept. by LINEAR. It was confirmed on 23 and 24 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs., and on 24 Sept. by Sabino Canyon Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S56 of 24 Sept.
2004 NF3
K04N03F
Amor
44 m/yd24.4224.524.5 2004-N400.057842 AU
2004 NF3 was reported this past week as observed with the ANU 1m telescope on 21 July, within the existing observation arc. This object has an MOID of 0.046 AU with Mars.
2004 SY4
K04S04Y
Apollo
47 m/yd24.2724.324.3 2004-S260.017002 AUUrgent, visibility ends 12 Oct.
NEW: 2004 SY4 was discovered on 19 Sept. by the Southern Sky Survey (SSS), was confirmed on 20 Sept. by Powell Obs., Jana Pittichova and Jim Bedient with the University of Hawaii 2.2m telescope on Mauna Kea, and by Mt. John, and Hunters Hill observatories, and was announced in MPEC 2004-S26 of 20 Sept. This object was also observed on 20 Sept. by SSS and Mt. John Obs., on 21 Sept. by Reedy Creek Obs., and on 22 Sept. by Desert Moon Obs., but not since. It will pass Earth at 8.4 LD at about 1933 UT on 29 Sept.
2004 SU55
K04S55U
Amor
48 m/yd24.2324.324.3 2004-S600.051039 AU
NEW: 2004 SU55 was discovered on 23 Sept. by LINEAR, was confirmed on 22 Sept. by LINEAR, on 23 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs., on 24 Sept. by LINEAR, and on 25 Sept. by Pla D'Arguines Obs. and Consell Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S60 of 26 Sept. It has an MOID of 0.046 AU with Mars, and will pass Earth at 21.7 LD on Oct. 1st.
2004 ST2
K04S02T
Aten
51 m/yd24.1024.224.1 2004-S230.045809 AUNecessary, visibility ends 8 Oct.
2004 ST2 was observed on 21 and 23 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs., and on 21 Sept. by Farpoint Obs.
2004 NU7
K04N07U
Amor
55 m/yd23.9424.424.6 2004-O010.013776 AU
2004 NU7 was reported this past week as observed on 21 July with the ANU 1m telescope, adding 2.395 days to what had been a 5.002-day observation arc. It has an MOID of 0.027 AU with Mars.
2004 SR
K04S00R
Apollo
59 m/yd23.7823.823.7 2004-S140.025356 AUUseful, visibility ends 29 Oct.
2004 SR was observed on 18 Sept. by Beaconsfield Obs., on 19 Sept. by Mt. John Obs., on 20 Sept. by Petit Jean Mountain Obs. and McCarthy Obs., on 22 Sept. by Begues Obs. (see cover image), and on 23 Sept. by Pla D'Arguines Obs.
2004 RC11
K04R11C
Apollo
69 m/yd23.4623.623.6 2004-R460.005008 AUNecessary, visibility ends 23 Oct.
2004 RC11 was observed on 21 Sept. by Farpoint Obs., adding 4.373 days to what had been a 8.679-day observation arc. It has an MOID of 0.023 AU with Mars.
2004 RO111
K04RB1O
Aten
80 m/yd23.1323.423.6 2004-R740.023832 AUUrgent, visibility ends 4 Oct.
2004 RO111 was observed on 21 Sept. by Desert Moon Obs., but not since. It has an MOID of 0.035 AU with Venus, and will pass Earth at 28.3 LD on Sept. 29th.
2004 SS26
K04S26S
Apollo
81 m/yd23.1023.123.2 2004-S540.033301 AU
NEW: 2004 SS26 was discovered on 22 Sept. by LINEAR, was confirmed by LINEAR and Hutsebaut on Sept. 23rd (the day it passed Earth at 15.8 LD), and on 24 Sept. by Great Shefford Obs. and Sabino Canyon Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S54 of 24 Sept. This object was also observed on 24 Sept. by LINEAR. It has an MOID of 0.042 AU with Mars.
2004 HB39
K04H39B
Amor
98 m/yd22.6922.722.5 2004-H740.093468 AU
2004 HB39 was reported this past week as observed with the ANU 1m telescope on 14 and 21 July, within the existing observation arc.
2004 SC56
K04S56C
Aten
100 m/yd22.6422.922.9 2004-S650.011185 AU
NEW: 2004 SC56 was discovered on 25 Sept. by LINEAR, was confirmed on 25 Sept. by Consell Obs., and on 26 Sept. by Farpoint Obs., LINEAR, and Sabino Canyon Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S65 of 26 Sept. It will pass Earth at 13.5 LD on 4 Oct.
2004 RL251
K04RP1L
Amor
102 m/yd22.6022.722.5 2004-R870.035564 AUUseful, visibility ends 15 Nov.
2004 RL251 was observed on 18 Sept. by Beaconsfield Obs., Buchloe Obs., and Lumezzane Obs., on 19 Sept. by University Hills Obs., Mt. John Obs., and Roeser Obs., on 20 Sept. by Rezman Obs., Beaconsfield Obs., and McCarthy Obs., on 21 Sept. by Beaconsfield Obs., on 22 Sept. by LINEAR and Great Shefford Obs., and on 23 Sept. by LINEAR and Pla D'Arguines Obs. It has an MOID of 0.009 AU with Mars.
2004 SA20
K04S20A
Apollo
105 m/yd22.5422.722.9 2004-S400.032924 AUUrgent, visibility ends 22 Oct.
NEW: 2004 SA20 came to 18.1 LD on 17 Sept. and was discovered on 21 Sept. by LINEAR. It was confirmed on 22 Sept. by Hutsebaut and Grasslands Obs., and was announced in MPEC 2004-S40 of 22 Sept. This object was also observed on 22 Sept. by LINEAR, but hasn't been reported to have been observed since then. It has MOIDs of 0.031 AU with Venus and 0.001 AU with Mars.
2004 QA2
K04Q02A
Amor
117 m/yd22.3122.322.1 2004-Q210.030064 AUNecessary, visibility ends 6 Oct.
2004 QA2 was observed on 20 Sept. by Mt. John Obs., adding 14.763 days to what had been a 16.313-day observation arc.
2004 RQ252
K04RP2Q
Apollo
has VIs
119 m/yd22.2822.322.3 2004-S050.000101 AUUrgent, visibility ends 12 Oct.
2004 RQ252 was observed on 19 Sept. by Mt. John Obs., on 20 Sept. by Pittichova at Mauna Kea and by Hunters Hill and Mt. John observatories, as well as by Alan Fitzsimmons' team using the remote-controlled educational Faulkes Telescope North on Haleakala, on 21 Sept. by Reedy Creek Obs., and not since then. NEODyS and JPL removed all their impact solutions for 2004 RQ252 on the Sept. 20th, but NEODyS reposted it on Sept. 25th. It has an MOID of 0.045 AU with Venus.
2004 RE84
K04R84E
Apollo
134 m/yd22.0122.222.6 2004-R550.019977 AUUrgent, visibility ends 10 Oct.
2004 RE84 was observed on 20 Sept. by Sandlot Obs. and Goodricke-Pigott Obs., on 21 Sept. by Farpoint Obs., on 22 Sept. by Sormano Obs. and Andrushivka Obs., and on 23 Sept. by Pla D'Arguines Obs. and Begues Obs. It has an MOID of 0.029 AU with Venus.
2004 SS
K04S00S
Amor
140 m/yd21.9222.022.1 2004-S150.032774 AUUseful, visibility ends 10 Dec.
2004 SS was observed on 20 Sept. by Pittichova at Mauna Kea and by Mt. John Obs. and McCarthy observatories, on 21 Sept. by Hutsebaut, on 23 Sept. by LINEAR, and on 24 Sept. by Begues Obs.

  Small object observation cross index   [table top]
ObjectObserved by MPC code
2004 HB39413
2004 NF3413
2004 NU7413
2004 OD4413
2004 QA2474
2004 RC11734
2004 RE84170, 587, 683, 734, 941, A50 & H36
2004 RL251130, 163, 215, 474, 704, 932, 941, A41, G72, J92 & J95
2004 RO111448
2004 RQ252428, 474, 568, E14 & F65
2004 SA1734 & J95
2004 SA20651, 704 & H06
2004 SC56176, 704, 734 & 854
2004 SE26651, 704 & G90
2004 SR170, 474, 932, 941, H41 & J92
2004 SR26704, 854, G90 & J95
2004 SS170, 474, 568, 704, 932 & H06
2004 SS26704, 854, H06 & J95
2004 ST2734 & J95
2004 ST26291, 448, 691, 854, H06, I05 & J95
2004 SU26704, 854 & J95
2004 SU55176, 704, 941 & J95
2004 SW26291, 854, H06 & J95
2004 SY4428, 448, 474, 568, 649, E12 & E14
CodeObservatoryObjects observed (days)
130Lumezzane Obs.2004 RL251
163Roeser Obs.2004 RL251
170Begues Obs.2004 RE84, 2004 SR & 2004 SS
176Consell Obs.2004 SC56 & 2004 SU55
215Buchloe Obs.2004 RL251
291Spacewatch 1.8m telescope2004 ST26(2) & 2004 SW26(2)
413Australian Natl. Univ. (ANU) 1m telescope2004 HB39(2), 2004 NF3, 2004 NU7 & 2004 OD4
428Reedy Creek Obs.2004 RQ252 & 2004 SY4
448Desert Moon Obs.2004 RO111, 2004 ST26 & 2004 SY4
474Mt. John Obs.2004 QA2, 2004 RL251, 2004 RQ252(2), 2004 SR, 2004 SS & 2004 SY4(2)
568Mauna Kea
 – Jana Pittichova

2004 RQ252, 2004 SS & 2004 SY4
587Sormano Obs.2004 RE84
649Powell Obs.2004 SY4
651Grasslands Obs.2004 SA20 & 2004 SE26
683Goodricke-Pigott Obs.2004 RE84
691Spacewatch 0.9m telescope2004 ST26
704LINEAR2004 RL251(2), 2004 SA20(2), 2004 SC56(2), 2004 SE26(2), 2004 SR26(3), 2004 SS, 2004 SS26(3), 2004 SU26 & 2004 SU55(3)
734Farpoint Obs.2004 RC11, 2004 RE84, 2004 SA1, 2004 SC56 & 2004 ST2
854Sabino Canyon Obs.2004 SC56, 2004 SR26, 2004 SS26, 2004 ST26, 2004 SU26 & 2004 SW26
932McCarthy Obs.2004 RL251, 2004 SR & 2004 SS
941Pla D'Arguines Obs.2004 RE84, 2004 RL251, 2004 SR & 2004 SU55
A41Rezman Obs.2004 RL251
A50Andrushivka Obs.2004 RE84
E12Southern Sky Survey (SSS)2004 SY4
E14Hunters Hill Obs.2004 RQ252 & 2004 SY4
F65Faulkes Telescope North
 – Alan Fitzsimmons' team

2004 RQ252
G72University Hills Obs.2004 RL251
G90Three Buttes Obs.2004 SE26 & 2004 SR26
H06New Mexico Skies
 – Robert Hutsebaut

2004 SA20, 2004 SS, 2004 SS26, 2004 ST26 & 2004 SW26
H36Sandlot Obs.2004 RE84
H41Petit Jean Mountain Obs.2004 SR
I05Southern TIE (SoTIE)
 – G. Masi & F. Mallia

2004 ST26
J92Beaconsfield Obs.2004 RL251(3) & 2004 SR
J95Great Shefford Obs.2004 RL251, 2004 SA1(2), 2004 SR26, 2004 SS26, 2004 ST2(2), 2004 ST26, 2004 SU26(2), 2004 SU55 & 2004 SW26
News briefs – panel 1/1 Major News for 26 Sept. 2004 previous
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News briefs

Naming:  The Boston Globe reports today that MIT LINEAR program Main Belt discovery 32222 2000 OD23 has been named Charlesvest for departing MIT president Charles Vest. This was announced in a presentation “last Saturday” (September 18th) and comes since the most recent IAU minor planet namings that were made public on September 2nd (see news).

Cover storyby Matthias Busch

I observed 2004 RU109 September 12th at Starkenburg Observatory with our 0.45m f/4.4 reflector and Apogee AP7 camera after reading MPEC 2004-R63, when I saw that this would be the last chance to observe that little rock. It was moving from east to west at a speed of 67"/min., which was rapidly increasing at that time. Less than a day later it hurtled at 450"/min! I integrated five seconds so that the trail would be limited to two pixels, which is OK for the astrometry as the residuals show. The 22 images span 15 minutes.

This observing work added 13 hours to what had been a 26-hour observation arc for this object, estimated to be on the order of 20 meters/yards wide and now classified as lost (see “Risk monitoring” below). Matthias Busch is the author of EasySky planetarium software.

Risk monitoring - panel 1/1 Major News for 26 Sept. 2004 previous
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Risk monitoring 26 Sept.

NEODyS and JPL have posted 2004 SW55, which was announced this morning in MPEC 2004-S62 as discovered Friday by Gordon Garradd at the Siding Spring Survey (SSS) and confirmed yesterday in two sessions by Rob McNaught on the Australian National University 1m telescope at Siding Spring as well as by Garradd on the SSS 0.5m Uppsala Schmidt Telescope. JPL puts this object's diameter estimate at 230 meters/yards.

2004 SQ252 isn't reported in the Sunday Daily Orbit Update MPEC.

NEODyS yesterday reclassified 2004 RU109 as “lost,” and A/CC will follow suit tomorrow by taking it off the Summary Risk Table (at right) and the CRT page, both used only to show the active pursuit of objects with impact solutions and currently in view. See the cover above for the last images of this object, caught by Matthias Busch at Starkenburg Observatory in Germany as it sped past Earth late on the 12th.

Summary Risk Table - sources checked at 0148 UTC, 27 Sep

Object

Assessment

Years

VI
PS
cum
PS
max
T
S
Arc 
days
 2004 SW55 NEODyS 9/262026-20465-7.07-7.7301.114
JPL 9/262026-20927-6.23-6.4601.114
 2004 RU109 NEODyS 9/142038-20536-6.72-7.1301.627
JPL 9/142038-20535-6.81-7.2101.627
 2004 RQ252 NEODyS 9/252031-20552-5.63-5.6306.009
JPL 9/20R E M O V E D
VI = count of "virtual impactors" (impact solutions)
See A/CC's Consolidated Risk Tables for more and maybe
  newer details, and check the monitors' links for latest info.
Note that only objects recently in view are shown here.
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