An Hour in the Life of Comet P/2010 V1 Ikeya-Murakami Fragments A, B, and C

Photographer
Mike Olason
Location of photo
Denver, Colorado
Date/Time of photo
2016/01/29 0946-1046 UT
Equipment
11" SCT @ f/6 Telescope and STF-8300M CCD Camera
Description
These images show comet P/2010 V1 Ikeya-Murakami's 19th magnitude fragments A, B and C movements over one hour. Fragment A was expected to be this bright, but Fragment C was not predicted to be brighter than magnitude 20, maybe Fragment B debris is showering Fragment C causing it to brighten. Fragment B over the hour appears to disperse into a cloud debris, maybe it is rotating within a debris cloud and changes it's appearance over the hour or it is breaking up further during this hour. Needless to say, the images are not pretty, but considering the fragments are magnitude 19, they show what amatuers with small telescopes can do with a CCD camera.
CATEGORIES
Astronomy Pictures: Sky & Telescope's Online Gallery, Meteor, Comet & Asteroid Pictures
Mike Olason

About Mike Olason

I started imaging comets in 1994 with an ST-5 CCD Camera and an 11" SC Telescope. Since then the CCD cameras have changed (ST-7, ST-402ME and STF-8300M), but I am still using the 11" SC Telescope. Naturally I have used a lot of smaller telescopes to obtain larger fields of view. I live south of Denver at an elevation of 6150 feet which allows me to image comets down to almost magnitude 21 on a perfect night. Unfortunately ChemTrails have turned Denver cloudy and dry. I use the camera software CCDOps to process my images. All I do to each image is dark subtraction and flat field, stack images as required to show faint comets, contrast/bright adjust the final image and maybe use a median filter to reduce the image noise. The result is an image that reflects reality and will never win any picture of the day award. If you would like to use my images for a project or ask a question send me an email to "moicylander@centurylink.net".
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