52P/Harrington–Abell

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52P/Harrington–Abell
52P/Harrington–Abell in 1998
Discovery
Discovered by Robert G. Harrington
George O. Abell
Discovery date March 22, 1955
Alternative
designations
1954 XIII; 1962 II; 1969 III;
1976 VIII; 1983 XVII; 1991 X
Orbital characteristics A
Epoch March 6, 2006
Aphelion 5.932 AU
Perihelion 1.757 AU
Semi-major axis 3.844 AU
Eccentricity 0.5429
Orbital period 7.538 a
Inclination 10.2204°
Last perihelion March 7, 2014[1]
August 14, 2006
Next perihelion 2021-Oct-05[2]

52P/Harrington–Abell is a periodic comet in our solar system.

It was discovered by Robert G. Harrington and George O. Abell in 1955 on plates from the Palomar Sky Survey taken with the 49-inch Samuel Oschin telescope.[3]

It has been seen on every apparition since then. With a period of about 7 years, it has been seen close to its perihelia in 1954, 1962, 1969, 1976, 1983, 1991, and 2006.[3] Its orbital period changed from 7.2 to 7.6 years when it passed .04 AU from Jupiter in April, 1974.[4] It typically gets no brighter than about magnitude 17.[3][5]

In 1998/1999, it was unexpectedly bright. When recovered on July 21, 1998, by Alain Maury, he expected it to be about magnitude 21 or 22. Instead, he found it to be thousands of times brighter at magnitude 12.2. The next night, its brightness was estimated by others at magnitude 10.9 to 11.8. It may have had a second outburst about 80 days before perihelion. It finally faded to dimmer than magnitude 12 by the end of March, 1999.[3][5]

At its return in 2006, it returned to normal brightness.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Syuichi Nakano (2011-10-30). "52P/Harrington-Abell (NK 2137)". OAA Computing and Minor Planet Sections. Retrieved 2012-02-18. 
  2. ^ "52P/Harrington-Abell Orbit". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 2014-06-16. 
  3. ^ a b c d Kazuo Kinoshita. "Cometography: 52P/Harrington-Abell". Gary W. Kronk. Archived from the original on 17 May 2011. Retrieved June 10, 2011. 
  4. ^ Kronk, Gary W.; Meyer, Maik (2010). Cometography: Volume 5, 1960-1982: A Catalog of Comets. Cambridge University Press. p. 471. ISBN 978-0-521-87226-3. 
  5. ^ a b "BAA Comet Section : Periodic Comets". British Astronomical Association. Retrieved June 10, 2011. 
  6. ^ Seiichi Yoshida. "52P/Harrington-Abell (2006)". Archived from the original on 14 May 2011. Retrieved June 10, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Periodic comets (by number)
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