Two sibling comets approaching to Earth

José J. Chambó Bris
Location of photo
Siding Spring, NSW, Australia
Date/Time of photo
2nd Mar. 2016 @ 12:21 UT
Takahashi FSQ ED 106mm. f/5.0 & SBIG STL-11000M
Comets 252P/LINEAR and P/2016 BA14 (PANSTARRS) imaged on March 2nd 2016, separated by only 1.5 degrees seem very differents: the 252P with a enormous and greenish gassy envelope while the 2016-BA14 is just a tiny mote between stars, nonetheless the similitude of its orbits seem reveal that really are fragments of a unique comet. Both are approaching to Earth, being its minimum distance 0.0036 and 0.0016 AU between March 21 and 22 (14 and 9 times the lunar distance). Between comets can be viewed the spiral galaxy NGC 2090.