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IAUC 4641: Poss. SNe; 1988j

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                                                  Circular No. 4641
Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams
Postal Address: Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
TWX 710-320-6842 ASTROGRAM CAM    Telephone 617-495-7244/7440/7444

     Two discoveries have tentatively been reported in connection with
the CCD search for supernovae in distant clusters of galaxies
with the Danish 1.5-m telescope at the European Southern Observatory by
L. Hansen, H. U. Norgaard-Nielsen and H. E. Jorgensen (1987, Messenger
No. 47, 46).
     (1) A galaxy (R.A. = 13h41m08s.0, Decl. = -0D16'31".3, equinox
1950.0), probably a member of the cluster J1836.14RC (z = 0.28) found by
R. Ellis and W. Couch, was noted by Hansen to brighten from V = 21.3 on
1987 Mar. 3 to V = 21.1 on 1988 Feb. 16 and 17.  CCD exposures with the
Anglo-Australian Telescope on Feb. 18 and 19 indicated Kron-Cousins R =
21.4 for the galaxy and showed further brightening by 0.18 mag between
these nights.  A spectrogram obtained by J. Allington-Smith with the
4.2-m William Herschel telescope and Durham-RGO faint object
spectrograph at La Palma on Feb. 18 gave a tentative redshift of z =
0.26 for the galaxy (based on weak emission lines) but was too poor to
prove the presence of a supernova.
     (2) Comparison of esposures of the cluster of galaxies AC 118 (z =
0.31) on 1986 Aug. 31 and 1988 Aug. 9 showed on the latter night an
excess of light close to a faint object, presumably a galaxy.  The
excess was confirmed on Aug. 10 and 11 and also by Ellis at La Palma.
The excess, of V = 22.29 +/- 0.10, is 0".45 east and 0".72 south of the
faint galaxy (V = 22.58 on 1986 Aug. 31), which is 55" east and 43"
north of a star of V = 17.9 at R.A. =  0h11m52s.6, Decl. = -30D42'23"
(equinox 1950.0, uncertainty 2").  A weak spectrogram (resolution 8 nm)
obtained (courtesy V. de Lapparent and A. Mazure) with the ESO Faint
Object Spectrograph and Camera and B 1000 grism on the 3.6-m telescope
on Aug. 12 showed the light excess to be blue (essentially constant flux
over 390-700 nm, apparently no emission lines), possibly--although this
has not yet been confirmed--with broad absorption features around
547.5 and 633.0 nm.

     H. Kosai, National Astronomical Observatory, Tokyo, informs us of
the following independent discoveries: Aug. 8.738 UT, Kesao Takamizawa,
Saku-Machi, Nagano; 8.746, Tetsuo Yanaka, Motegi-Machi, Tochigi; 8.754,
Masanori Terasako, Hamamatsu-Shi, Shizuoka; 8.785, Ryoichi Irie,
Toyooka-Shi, Hyogo; 8.794, Shigehisa Fujikawa, Onohara-Mura, Kagawa.
All reported the comet as mag 9, diffuse with central condensation.

1988 August 16                 (4641)              Brian G. Marsden

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