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IAUC 7094: GRB 990123; 1998es, 1999D; C/1998 P1

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                                                  Circular No. 7094
Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams
Mailstop 18, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
IAUSUBS@CFA.HARVARD.EDU or FAX 617-495-7231 (subscriptions)
URL http://cfa-www.harvard.edu/iau/cbat.html  ISSN 0081-0304
Phone 617-495-7244/7440/7444 (for emergency use only)

GRB 990123
     S. C. Odewahn, J. S. Bloom, and S. R. Kulkarni, California
Institute of Technology, report on behalf of the Caltech-NRAO-CARA
GRB Collaboration:  "On Jan. 23.56 UT, we imaged the BeppoSAX
localization (Piro et al. 1999, GCN 199,
http://gcn.gsfc.nasa.gov/gcn/gcn3/199.gcn3) of GRB 990123 with the
Palomar 1.52-m reflector (+ CCD).  We found a source (R = 18.2)
located at R.A. = 15h25m30s.5, Decl. = +44o46'00" (equinox 2000.0;
GCN 202 gives a revised BeppoSAX position of R.A. = 15h25m29s,
Decl. = +44o45'.5).  The error in the position (derived from the
Digital Sky Survey) is about 1".5.  At the same location, no object
is detected to the plate limit of the first Palomar Sky Survey,
whereas a faint (R about 21.3) object is seen in the second Palomar
Sky Survey image.  The photometry is preliminary and is based on
the Cambridge Automated Plate Machine catalogue.  Finding charts
can be found at http://astro.caltech.edu/~jsb/GRB/grb990123.html;
see also GCN 201.  We suggest that the bright object is the optical
afterglow of GRB 990123 and that the faint object is the host
galaxy.  If so, this is the brightest optical afterglow and host
galaxy known to date.  In view of this, we urge observations at all
wavelengths and particularly spectroscopic observations of this

     E. Prosperi, Larciano, Italy, reports the following precise
positions and magnitudes, obtained with a 0.25-m f/6.3 reflector +
CCD (equinox 2000.0):  SN 1998es in NGC 632 (cf. IAUC 7050), Jan.
20.840 UT, R.A. = 1h37m17s.60, Decl. = +5o52'50".6, R = 15.0; SN
1999D in NGC 3690 (cf. IAUC 7088, 7089), Jan. 20.983, R.A. =
11h28m28s.42, Decl. = +58o33'38".7, R = 15.8.

     Total magnitude estimates:  1998 Dec. 16.19 UT, 9.7 (R. J.
Bouma, Groningen, The Netherlands, 0.25-m reflector); 17.26, 9.1
(A. Pereira, Cabo da Roca, Portugal, 14x100 binoculars); 21.79, 9.4
(A. Pearce, Dunsborough, W. Australia, 20x80 binoculars); 30.12,
9.4 (M. Lehky, Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, 25x100 binoculars);
1999 Jan. 13.12, 8.5 (K. Hornoch, Lelekovice, Czech Republic, 10x80
binoculars); 20.96, 9.0 (M. Meyer, Frauenstein, Germany, 20x100
binoculars); 22.31, 10.3 (J. G. de S. Aguiar, Campinas, Brazil,
0.23-m reflector).

                      (C) Copyright 1999 CBAT
1999 January 23                (7094)            Daniel W. E. Green

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