168P/Hergenrother during its 2012 outburst. By Mount Lemmon Observatory.
|Discovered by||Carl W. Hergenrother|
|Discovery date||November 22, 1998|
|Orbital characteristics A|
|Epoch||March 6, 2006|
|Semi-major axis||3.632 AU|
|Orbital period||6.923 a|
|Last perihelion||October 1, 2012
November 2, 2005
|Next perihelion||August 5, 2019|
The comet came to perihelion on 1 October 2012, and was expected to reach about apparent magnitude 15.2, but due to an outburst the comet reached apparent magnitude 8. As a result of the outburst of gas and dust, the comet was briefly more than 500 times brighter than it would have been without the outburst. On 19 October 2012, images by the Virtual Telescope Project showed a dust cloud trailing the nucleus. Images by the 2 m (79 in) Faulkes Telescope North on 26 October 2012 confirm a fragmentation event. The secondary fragment was about magnitude 17. Further observations by the 8.1 m (320 in) Gemini telescope show that the comet fragmented into at least 4 parts.
- Syuichi Nakano (2009-04-23). "168P/Hergenrother (NK 1778)". OAA Computing and Minor Planet Sections. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
- "168P/Hergenrother Orbit". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 2014-06-20.
- Syuichi Nakano (2012-07-17). "168P/Hergenrother (NK 2283)". OAA Computing and Minor Planet Sections. Retrieved 2012-10-13.
- IAUC 8560: recovery of comet P/1998 W2
- Seiichi Yoshida (2012-02-21). "168P/Hergenrother (2012)". Seiichi Yoshida's Comet Catalog. Retrieved 2012-02-25.
- Gianluca Masi (October 19, 2012). "Comet 168P/Hergenrother: hi-res images (19 Oct. 2012)". Virtual Telescope Project. Retrieved 2016-10-18.
- Giovanni Sostero; Nick Howes; Ernesto Guido (October 26, 2012). "Splitting event in comet 168P/Hergenrother". Remanzacco Observatory in Italy – Comets & Neo. Retrieved 2012-10-28.
- Phil Plait (2012-11-05). "Breaking up is easy to do. If you're a comet". Bad Astronomy. Retrieved 2012-11-05.
- Orbital simulation from JPL (Java) / Horizons Ephemeris
- 168P on Seiichi Yoshida's comet list
- Elements and Ephemeris for 168P/Hergenrother – Minor Planet Center
- 168P at Kronk's Cometography
- Comet 168P Hergenrother in outburst (Google+ chat archive Oct 12, 2012)
- Comet Hergenrother in Outburst (Carl Hergenrother : 20 Oct 2012)
- Comet 168P and fragment as seen by Kitt Peak WIYN 3.5-metre (140 in) on 30 Oct 2012
- Scientists Monitor Comet Breakup (168P-Hergenrother was imaged by the NOAO/Gemini telescope Nov. 2, 2012)
- Temporal Correlation Between Outbursts and Fragmentation Events of Comet 168P/Hergenrother (arXiv:1409.7641 : 26 Sep 2014)
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