Great Shefford Observatory a week ago Friday during flooding in southern England. Peter Birtwhistle reports water didn't enter the observatory but some did get into his home, although nothing like just to the north in Gloucestershire where buildings were inundated for a week. ©Copyright Great Shefford Observatory. See "Bits & pieces" below for more about this.
Contents on 28 July '07
- Minor-Object News -- eight items
- Minor-Object Science -- one paper
- IAU Minor Planet Center
- Impact Risk Monitoring -- nothing to report
- Consolidated Risk Tables - CRT page
- Ephemerides for risk-rated objects
- Ephemerides for small asteroids
Navigation tips: Use the << and >> arrows on the menus for each regular section (Observers, Risks, etc.) to move to the previous and next day's news for that section. Use the Index menu item to access specific days this year through a calendar interface. And use the all-up news archive to access news from any time since A/CC began in early 2002. To keep track of what's new each day, watch the Chronology section.
Minor-Object News on 28 July '07
- "Dawn ELV status report," NASA KSC 27 July - Quote: "Dawn was removed from the launch vehicle on Sunday, July 22. The spacecraft was returned to the Astrotech payload processing facility near Kennedy Space Center at 7:30 a.m. that day. No processing activities are currently scheduled... The launch of Dawn is currently expected to occur no later than Sept. 26; however, a launch date as early as Sept. 7 is being preserved in planning schedules."
- "Searching for meteorites," Moose Jaw Times Herald 28 July - Quote: "[Geology student Nathan] Seon will be at the Western Development Museum to identify potential meteorites and answer any questions local people might have. The target group is farmers, explained Seon, because they are most likely to come across a meteorite in their fields."
- Bits & pieces: Europe has experienced a range of natural disasters this Summer, as summed up by ESA yesterday, "Floods and fires across Europe captured from space." We asked Peter Birtwhistle in southern England about how he had been fairing and received back the photo above showing Great Shefford Observatory staying only barely dry. However, "just a couple of hundred yards down the road," the village of Great Shefford was in deeper water (note the pub picture).
SpaceWeather.com yesterday showed amateur spectroscopy of comet C/2006 VZ13 (LINEAR) that found "Cyanogen (CN), diatomic carbon (C2) and, surprisingly, a dash of amidogen (NH2)."
PHA 2007 DT103 flies past Earth tomorrow at about 9.3 lunar distances just after 1400 UTC, relatively close for an object of its size discovered only five months ago. Its brightness "suggests a diameter within a factor of two of 0.4 km" according to the JPL radar 2007 DT103 Planning page. This object was successfully observed by radar two days ago from Goldstone in southern California (Arecibo is unavailable), and is scheduled for closer observation today and August 1st.
The daily science papers section here is reserved to recent listings of publicly available articles related directly to the study of small Solar System bodies, including meteors and meteorites, and the formation of such bodies as observed around other stars. Not quite making the cut July 26th were three articles that arXiv.org had cross-listed from geophysics to astrophysics. These were on the subject of zircons, which are extremely important to geochronology (they're the Earth's oldest known mineral grains) and are also found in lunar meteorites and in eucrites from probably 4 Vesta and maybe other asteroidal origins. These papers are about terrestrial zircons but may be of interest, anyway, especially "Two Trends of Composition Variation of Zircons and Their Significance in Origin Discrimination" by Xuezhao Bao (abstract) and "A Raman spectroscopic study of zircons on micro-scale and Its significance in explaining the origin of zircons" by Bao and others (abstract). The third abstract and download link is here.
- "Local star-gazer discovers comet," Taipei Times 28 July - Quote: "[In] an interesting political twist to the celestial find, astronomers yesterday admitted that China's cooperation was key in identifying the objects [comet C/2007 N3 and NEA 2007 NL1]. While cross-strait relations on many fronts continue to fizzle, cross-strait astronomical cooperation has flourished, they said... As the only country in Asia scheduled to participate in 'Pan-STARRS,' ... Taiwan is also working closely with astronomers in the West." - Note: For more about these discoveries, see news on July 14th, 18th and 19th.
- "Comet Discoverers Awarded," Sky & Telescope 27 July - Quote: "This year the [Edgar Wilson Award to amateur astronomers is split] among three people: John Broughton (Australia), David H. Levy (US) and Terry Lovejoy (Australia)."
- "Catalina Sky Survey," Arizona Star 27 July - Quote: "A team of UA astronomers has created the leading survey for near-Earth objects, using two telescopes in the Catalinas and one in Australia to scan for asteroids or comets that may be capable of striking Earth. As one of five surveys in NASA's Spaceguard program, which was mandated by Congress in 1998, the Catalina Sky Survey, led by Steve Larson, has discovered 73 percent of all near-Earth objects found in the last six months."
- "World's Leading Meteorite Experts Convene in Tucson Aug. 13-17," Univ. of Arizona 27 July - Quote: "About 350 meteorite experts are expected to convene in Tucson for the 70th Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society ... the world's largest organization devoted to the study of meteorites and other extraterrestrial material... Scientists will give more than 300 talks and poster presentations on topics ranging from early solar system formation and planetary impact cratering to astrobiology and results from the recent Genesis and Stardust space missions [program]."
- "UA team set to move, polish $3M telescope mirror," Tucson Citizen 28 July - Quote: "The [DCT] mirror, cast and fused by Corning Inc. in Canton, N.Y., arrived at UA Optical Sciences Large Optics Shop ... in August 2006... Once polishing is completed, the mirror will be integrated into the mechanical system that will hold the mirror and tested prior to delivery [in 2009]." - Note: See also UA's news release.
Minor-Object Science on 28 July '07
- "16-20 Jupiter mass RV companion orbiting the brown dwarf candidate ChaHa8" by Joergens, V. with A. Mueller, abstract & PDF at arXiv.org 26 July - Quote: "We report the discovery of a 16-20 Jupiter mass radial velocity companion around the very young (~3 Myr) brown dwarf candidate ChaHa8 (M5.75-M6.5)... ChaHa8 harbors most certainly the lowest mass companion detected so far in a close (~1 AU) orbit around a brown dwarf or very low-mass star. From the uncertainty in the orbit solution, it cannot completely be ruled out that the companion has a mass in the planetary regime [less than 13 Jupiter mass]." - Note: JJ Kavelaars comments to A/CC that this "discovery of what is possibly a low mass planet around a brown dwarf is a highly significant step in the planet formation picture. To date there is little evidence that brown dwarf disks form planets. Low-mass planets would likely form in a disk, as opposed to brown dwarfs with high-mass planet companions where instability collapse is a viable option."
NEOCP Activity on 28 July '07
The MPC's NEO Confirmation Page has 3 listings: 2 new, 1 updated
When last checked at 2354 UTC today, the Minor Planet Center's NEO discovery Confirmation Page (NEOCP) had two new and one updated listings. Of these, one was a "one nighter."
To learn how observers use the NEOCP, see Suno Observatory's Practical guide on how to observe NEOCP object.
New MPECs on 28 July '07
Minor Planet Electronic Circulars
As of last check at 2354 UTC, there has been one MPEC issued today from the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- K07M24B 2007 MB24 (i=47.7°, arc=33 days, H=18.2 ~776m) from New Millennium Obs. (July 26.89-94p6)
- K07L32R 2007 LR32 (arc=63 days, H=17.2 ~1.23 km) from Santa Mama Obs. (July 26.97-00p4), Hamamatsu-Yuto Obs. (July 27.58-61p7), and La Canada Obs. (July 27.90-91p3)
- K07L19Q 2007 LQ19 (Q=4.247 AU, arc=44 days, H=17.7 ~977m) from the Siding Spring Survey (SSS) (July 27.83p1)
- K07DA3T 2007 DT103 (arc=152 days, H=18.6 ~645m) from Simeis Astrophysical Obs. (July 23.79-81p11), Stia Obs. (July 26.82-85p6), and Great Shefford Obs. (July 27.00p3)
- K06R36O 2006 RO36 (arc=2 opp, H=18.0 ~851m) from Stia Obs. (July 26.89-90p2)
- K06A00D 2006 AD (i=55.0°, arc=3 opp, H=16.7 ~1.55 km) from SSS (July 27.80-81p2)
- K04S09T 2004 ST9 (arc=2 opp, H=18.0 ~851m) from Santa Mama Obs. (July 26.88-92p4) and New Millennium Obs. (July 26.95-00p10)
- E1424 141424 2002 CD from David Tholen's team on Mauna Kea (July 26.60-61p3 at R=22.1-3)
- A8519 108519 2001 LF from La Canada Obs. (July 27.88-89p3)
- 85275 85275 1994 LY from New Millennium Obs. (July 26.88-96p12)
Observers on 28 July '07
Nine observing facilities appear in today's MPECs.
|J95||Great Shefford Obs. in England, 1 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 DT103|
|379||Hamamatsu-Yuto Obs. in Japan, 1 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 LR32|
|J87||La Canada Obs. in Spain, 2 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 LR32, 108519|
|5682||David Tholen's team on Mauna Kea in Hawaii, 1 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 141424|
|A24||New Millennium Obs. in Italy, 3 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 MB24, 2004 ST9, 85275|
|B38||Santa Mama Obs. in Italy, 2 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 LR32, 2004 ST9|
|E12||Siding Spring Survey in New South Wales, 2 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 LQ19, 2006 AD|
|094||Simeis Astrophysical Obs. in Ukraine, 1 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 DT103|
|A78||Stia Obs. in Italy, 2 in MPEC 2007-O52 -- 2007 DT103, 2006 RO36|
Impact Risk Monitoring on 28 July '07
At last check (NEODyS and JPL at 2354 UTC) there was no risk monitoring news to report yet today. See the CRT for activity in the last month.
Chronology on 28 July '07
Times are UTC for when the items were noted or added by Major News.
|1914||Added news report, "Bits & pieces"|
Added link to news story, "Searching for meteorites"
Added link to news story, "Dawn ELV status report"
|0718||Added MOS paper, "16-20 Jupiter mass RV companion orbiting the brown dwarf candidate ChaHa8" - see above|
Added link to news story, "Catalina Sky Survey"
Added link to news story, "World's Leading Meteorite Experts Convene in Tucson Aug. 13-17"
Added link to news story, "Comet Discoverers Awarded"
Added link to news story, "Local star-gazer discovers comet"
Added link to news story, "UA team set to move, polish $3M telescope mirror"
|0707||Grabbed MPEC 2007-O52 - Daily Orbit Update - see above|