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IAUC 8969: C/2008 R1; V1647 Ori

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IAUC number

                                                  Circular No. 8969
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://www.cfa.harvard.edu/iau/cbat.html  ISSN 0081-0304
Phone 617-495-7440/7244/7444 (for emergency use only)

     G. J. Garradd reports the discovery of a comet with a 15" coma
(more prominent on the northern side) on CCD images taken with the
0.5-m Uppsala Schmidt telescope at Siding Spring (discovery
observation tabulated below).  Following posting on the Minor
Planet Center's 'NEOCP' webpage, G. Sostero, Remanzacco, Italy,
reports that P. Camilleri, E. Guido, and he co-added 24 unfiltered
120-s CCD exposures, obtained remotely with a 0.35-m f/6.7
reflector of Grove Creek-Skylive Observatory at Trunkey, NSW,
Australia, on Sept. 2.71-2.79 UT, showing a coma about 8" in
diameter, elongated toward p.a. about 30 deg.  C. Jacques and E.
Pimentel, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil, obtained CCD
images on Sept. 4.1 with a 0.30-m f/3.0 reflector that show a coma
diameter of 25".

     2008 UT             R.A. (2000) Decl.       Mag.
     Sept. 2.49906   21 41 12.73   -47 47 56.4   18.5

The available astrometry, very preliminary parabolic orbital
elements (T = 2008 Nov. 8.969 TT, q = 1.70548 AU, Peri. = 336.687
deg, Node = 27.273 deg, i = 19.027 deg, equinox 2000.0), and an
ephemeris appear on MPEC 2008-R22.

     C. Aspin, Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii (UH),
reports that an optical spectrum of V1647 Ori was obtained on Aug.
30 UT using the UH 2.2-m telescope (+ SNIFS integral-field
spectrograph).  Using the Spitzer flux-to-magnitude converter
(http://ssc.spitzer.caltech.edu/tools/magtojy/) and the flux at
650.0 nm from the calibrated SNIFS spectrum (2.1 x 10**-16 erg
s**-1 cm**-2 A**-1) suggests that, on this date, V1647 Ori had a
Johnson R magnitude of 17.3.  This is around 6 magnitudes brighter
than the measured quiescent brightness of r' = 23.3.  The spectrum
has a spectral resolution of around R = 1300 and shows a very red
continuum with strong H_alpha emission.  The H_alpha emission line
exhibited a P-Cyg profile with a blue-shifted absorption trough
extending to around 500 km/s from the line rest wavelength.  In
addition, the red Ca II triplet lines were strongly in emission.
McNeil's nebula (cf. IAUC 8284, 8354), illuminated by V1647 Ori,
was also strongly visible.  This confirms that V1647 Ori has
undergone another strong outburst (cf. IAUC 8968) similar to the
one observed in 2003, the previous event lasting around 26 months.

                      (C) Copyright 2008 CBAT
2008 September 4               (8969)            Daniel W. E. Green

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