31 July 2014 - Mission Day: 6817 - DOY: 212

SOHO observes 200th comet

    Click on the image for a larger version
    LASCO C2 running difference image
    This image shows SOHO's 111th comet, which was discovered in real-time on April 28, 2000. It is designated as C/2000 H2 (SOHO). The image shows the comet as it appeared in the LASCO C2 telescope on April 29.
    Also available: GIF animation, MPEGs: Small, Full size.

In under 5 years, SOHO has discovered its 200th comet. The 200th comet was actually discovered in a search of archival data by Michael Oates of England. The 200th comet was reported by the IAU on Saturday, August 19th. The comet was found in data from April 11, 1997 and is designated C/1997 G6 (SOHO).

One of the reasons for the rapid discovery rate is the fact that new analyses of comet lightcurves have revealed that LASCO C2 images are more useful for discovering comets than previously thought, especially during May-July. This has caused a very successful "archive hunt" for previously undiscovered comets, since LASCO C3 images have been the subject of the most scrutiny so far.

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Picture Credit: SOHO/LASCO (ESA & NASA)
Instrument/observatories: LASCO (Large Angle and Spectrometric Coronagraph);
Taken: 28 May 1998
Special thanks to Doug Biesecker for maintaining the Sungrazer site and providing these images.


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