Possibly one of the last images of C/SWAN 2012 
from NASA/ESA SOHO LASCO C2 at 2136 on March 14th.

Comet C/SWAN 2012 was discovered by Ukrainian desktop observer Vladimir Bezugly in March 4th and 6th public imagery from SWAN aboard NASA/ESA's SOHO spacecraft. As Karl Battams explains in his live blog for this object, this is not just the first Kreutz group comet (out of many hundreds) to be detected by SWAN, but also the first to be discovered with that instrument. The above image is from SOHO's LASCO C2 camera at 2136 UT yesterday, and the comet isn't seen in the next C2 images from 0312 and later this morning. Image credit: NASA/ESA/SOHO.
    Update: This object, which didn't survive, has been designated C/2012 E2 (SWAN).


Contents  on 15 March '12

Asteroid/Comet Connection (A/CC) Resources:

The latest A/CC news is available via framed access, RSS news feed RSS news feed, or redirection. - Note: A/CC has a main Web site and also a backup site with its own duplicate RSS news feed.

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 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.

Traffic Report  on 15 March '12

Five objects reported inside ten LD

Five asteroids are reported traveling inside ten lunar distances (LD) of Earth today. Within Earth's Hill sphere, 2012 EN5 comes its closest to Earth on this passage, reaching 1.43 LD at 2104 UTC, and its closest to the Moon: 2.39 LD at 2155 UTC. Further away, risk-listed radar target 2012 DW60 is outbound from 3.90 to 4.93 LD, 2012 EJ5 from 5.75 to 6.09 LD, and radar target 2012 DH54 from 5.95 to 6.86 LD, while newly discovered 2012 EL8 is at about 7.3 LD* from our planet.

Approaching our neighborhood, risk-listed 2012 EK5 arrives inside ten LD on March 19th, risk-listed intruder 2012 EG5 arrives inside ten LD on March 27th, and 2007 HV4 arrives inside ten LD on April 14th.

This report was updated at 2353 UTC with new discovery 2012 EL8 (MPEC) and, earlier, follow-up in today's DOU MPEC for 2012 EN5 and 2012 EM5, plus departed 2012 DA14 and 2012 DU60. This report was previously updated at 1417 UTC.


Notes: Ten times the distance to the Moon (ten LD) has no astronomical significance but is a useful reporting boundary. Earth's Hill sphere (of gravitational influence) is estimated to extend out to around 3.89 LD. Object distances are interpreted by A/CC from JPL Horizons data. "LD*" indicates some passage uncertainty. See also current sky chart and object details (alt-details), ephemerides, and today's timeline.

Radar Astrometry  on 15 March '12

Radar observation of four objects

The JPL Solar System Dynamics Group Radar Astrometry database has added or updated the following small-body radar observing work:


Data update noted at 1906 UTC when the database was dated 15 March


Data update noted at 2016 UTC when the database was dated 15 March


Data update noted at 2201 UTC when the database was dated 15 March


Data update noted at 2359 UTC when the database was dated 15 March

NEOCP Activity  on 15 March '12

The MPC's NEO Confirmation Page has 53 listings

When last checked at 2359 UTC today, the Minor Planet Center's Near Earth Object discovery Confirmation Page (NEOCP) had 53 objects listed. Of these, 23 were "one nighters." So far The Tracking News has counted a total of 60 listings on the NEOCP today.

New MPECs  on 15 March '12

Minor Planet Electronic Circulars

As of last check at 2359 UTC, there have been seven MPECs posted today from the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


MPEC 2012-E66 - "22:15 UT" - 2012 EM8


MPEC 2012-E65 - "22:13 UT" - 2012 EL8


MPEC 2012-E64 - "22:11 UT" - 2012 EK8


MPEC 2012-E63 - "22:09 UT" - 2012 EJ8


MPEC 2012-E62 - "22:07 UT" - 2012 EP5


MPEC 2012-E61 - "22:05 UT" - 2012 EP5


<< DOU on 15 Mar. '12 >>  MPEC 2012-E60 - "06:02 UT" - Daily Orbit Update

Observers  on 15 March '12

A total of 35 observers appear in today's MPECs.

CodeObserver / observatory
251Arecibo in Puerto Rico, 4 in radar -- 2012 DH4, 192642, 163295, 138971
C60Argelander Institute for Astronomy Obs. in Germany, 1 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2004 QJ7
H21Astronomical Research Obs. Westfield in Illinois, 17 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E61, 2012-E63, 2012-E64 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EO3, 2012 EM8, 2012 EK8, 2012 EJ8, 2012 EC, 2012 EA2, 2012 DZ32, 2012 DY32, 2012 DX75, 2012 DN14, 2012 CO46, 2012 BT23, 2012 BA35, 2012 AW12, 2012 AE1, 2012 AA11
J51Atlante Obs. in the Canary Islands, 2 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 DH4, 141018
B88Bigmuskie Obs. in Italy, 1 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 143651
160Castelmartini Obs. in Italy, 10 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 EM5, 2012 DX75, 2012 DH4, 2012 BC20, 2011 YV15, 312942, 275558, 267221, 263976, 192642
703Catalina Sky Survey (CSS) in Arizona, 11 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EM8, 2012 DK61, 2009 QE8, 1998 KN3, 1995 DW1, 275558, 267221, 138524, 5587, 5324, 4055
807|Robert Holmes in Illinois via Cerro Tololo Inter-American Obs. (CTIO) in Chile, 7 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EO3, 2012 EM8, 2012 DX75, 2012 DW30, 2012 DO8, 2011 YM63, 2004 JA
G48Doc Greiner Research Obs. Rancho Hildalgo (DGRO-RH) in New Mexico, 6 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E64 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EM8, 2012 EK8, 2012 DX75, 2012 DH4, 2012 BT23, 2012 BC20
151Eschenberg Obs. in Switzerland, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8, 2002 EM6
203GiaGa Obs. in Italy, 1 in MPEC 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8
253Goldstone DSS-14 70m antenna in southern California, 1 in radar -- 192642
651Grasslands Obs. in Arizona, 1 in MPEC 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8
J95Great Shefford Obs. in England, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E65 -- 2012 EM5, 2012 EL8
379Hamamatsu-Yuto Obs. in Japan, 3 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 BJ134, 2011 YV15, 141018
C32Ka-Dar Obs. TAU Station in Russia, 1 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 DX75
704LINEAR in New Mexico, 5 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 EL5, 2012 EB2, 2012 DX75, 32906, 6050
A14Les Engarouines Obs. in France, 1 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 32906
H01Magdalena Ridge Obs. (MRO) in New Mexico, 6 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E61, 2012-E62, 2012-E63, 2012-E64, 2012-E65 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EM8, 2012 EL8, 2012 EK8, 2012 EJ8, 2012 DA14
5682David Tholen's team on Mauna Kea in Hawaii, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E61 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EC
B67Mirasteilas Obs. in Switzerland, 5 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2009 QE8, 2004 QJ7, 2002 EM6, 1998 KN3, 1994 NK
900Moriyama Obs. in Japan, 1 in MPEC 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8
G96Mt. Lemmon Survey (MLS) in Arizona, 9 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E61, 2012-E63 & 2012-E65 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EL8, 2012 EJ8, 2008 ER, 2002 EH1, 53319, 189008, 154589, 153814
I89Nerpio Obs. in Italy, 1 in MPEC 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8
F51Pan-STARRS 1 (PS1) in Hawaii, 7 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8, 2012 DV32, 2012 BK11, 2008 QT3, 1998 FF14, 7977, 6053
B04Saint-Barthelemy Obs. in Italy, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EM8, 2012 EM5
104San Marcello Pistoiese Obs. in Italy, 5 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E63, 2012-E64, 2012-E65 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EM8, 2012 EL8, 2012 EL5, 2012 EK8, 2012 EJ8
H36Sandlot Obs. in Kansas, 1 in MPEC 2012-E66 -- 2012 EM8
204Schiaparelli Obs. in Italy, 16 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E61, 2012-E63, 2012-E64 & 2012-E66 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EO5, 2012 EM8, 2012 EK8, 2012 EJ8, 2012 DU60, 2012 DK4, 2012 DH4, 2012 CP36, 2012 BS23, 2011 MD5, 2010 SV3, 2004 MD, 2002 CM1, 2001 FA7, 2000 DK8
510Siegen Obs. in Germany, 1 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2012 EN5
691Spacewatch 0.9m telescope in Arizona, 2 in MPEC 2012-E60 -- 2011 SO32, 320378
291Spacewatch 1.8m telescope in Arizona, 21 in MPECs 2012-E60, 2012-E61 & 2012-E62 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 DX43, 2012 DV43, 2012 DV32, 2012 DO8, 2012 DL31, 2012 DK61, 2012 DJ61, 2012 DJ4, 2012 DG54, 2012 DG4, 2012 DE61, 2012 CM29, 2011 XM1, 2010 ON101, 2010 OD101, 2010 LR33, 2010 LN14, 2010 LL34, 2008 JG, 21277
I93St. Pardon de Conques Obs. in France, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E61 -- 2012 EP5, 2012 EM5
C92Valdicerro Obs. in Italy, 2 in MPECs 2012-E60 & 2012-E64 -- 2012 EO5, 2012 EK8
C44Volta Obs. in Italy, 1 in MPEC 2012-E64 -- 2012 EK8
For a list of all participating observatories that have Web addresses, see A/CC's Observatory Links page.

Impact Risk Monitoring  on 15 March '12

Summary Risk Table for Risk Assessments Updated Today   (last checks: NEODyS and JPL at 2359 UTC)
See the CRT page for a list of all objects rated recently as risks and our ephemerides page for a list of risk-listed objects under current observation.
The time horizon for JPL is 100 years from today and for NEODyS is usually the year 2090. Both also post impact solutions beyond 100 years for a few special objects.
For the latest official risk assessments, and for explanations of the terminology, see the JPL NEO Program Sentry and NEODyS CLOMON2 risk pages.
0000NNN000

Object

Risk
Monitor
When
Noted
UTC
0000T0000
Year
Range

VI
#
000NN00
Prob
Cum
T0000
PS
Cum
T0000
PS
Max

T
S


Notes for Today's Latest Risk Assessments
2012 ECJPL Sentry14152068-2107183.4e-06-5.20-5.470JPL: "Analysis based on 60 observations spanning 12.894 days (2012-Mar-01.3419 to 2012-Mar-14.23632)." Diameter approximately 0.066 km. from mean, weighted H=23.5.
NEODyS14152049-209052.96e-06-5.21-5.340NEODyS: "Based on 60 optical observations (of which 0 are rejected as outliers) from 2012-03-01.343 to 2012-03-14.237."
2012 DA14JPL Sentry14152020-2044357.9e-05-3.51-3.950JPL: "Analysis based on 136 observations spanning 20.350 days (2012-Feb-23.03431 to 2012-Mar-14.38455)." Diameter approximately 0.044 km. from mean, weighted H=24.4.
NEODyS14152020-20892953.6e-04-3.15-3.850NEODyS: "Based on 139 optical observations (of which 4 are rejected as outliers) from 2012-02-23.029 to 2012-03-14.385."
2010 HP20NEODyS14152021-20891631.99e-05-6.23-7.340NEODyS: "Based on 12 optical observations (of which 0 are rejected as outliers) from 2010-04-20.449 to 2010-04-20.497."

Legend: VI# = VI count, Prob Cum = cumulative probability, PS Cum/Max = cumulative/maximum Palermo Scale, TS = Torino Scale

An impact solution, also known as a "virtual impactor" (VI), is not a prediction but rather a possibility derived from a variant orbit calculation that cannot be eliminated yet based on the existing data. Elimination can come quickly with just a little further observation or may take weeks or months, sometimes years. Once superceded or eliminated, a former impact solution has zero relevance to an object's risk. See Jon Giorgini's "Understanding Risk Pages" to learn more.

Chronology  on 15 March '12

Times are UTC for when items were noted or added by The Tracking News.

2359Noted Radar Astrometry database update - see above
2353Updated Traffic Report
2245Grabbed MPEC 2012-E61 - 2012 EP5 - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E62 - 2012 EP5 - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E63 - 2012 EJ8 - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E64 - 2012 EK8 - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E65 - 2012 EL8 - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E66 - 2012 EM8 - see above
2201Noted Radar Astrometry database update - see above
2016Noted Radar Astrometry database update - see above
1906Noted Radar Astrometry database update - see above
1415Noted that NEODyS has updated its 2010 HP20 risk assessment - see above
Noted that JPL Sentry has updated its 2012 DA14 risk assessment - see above
Noted that NEODyS has updated its 2012 DA14 risk assessment - see above
Noted that JPL Sentry has updated its 2012 EC risk assessment - see above
Noted that NEODyS has updated its 2012 EC risk assessment - see above
Grabbed MPEC 2012-E60 - Daily Orbit Update - see above