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Heads up: nice NEO pass

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djswan2002's picture
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Heads up: nice NEO pass

Hello,

I'd just like to flag that 2015 FP118 will be making a close approach on September 3rd. It's predicted to be around mag 15 at that time, and most importantly it will be located very far north on the celestial sphere, so nice and easy for us. It'll be moving with an apparent motion of over 25 arcsec/min around its close approach.

A nice imaging, and maybe even visual, opportunity I think.

David

You can get some data on the object here. And there are links to the ephemeris, orbit diagram etc if you are interested.

https://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/sbdb.cgi?sstr=2015%20FP118

djswan2002's picture
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2015 FP118

This NEO will pass less than a third of a degree from Pherkad Major (UMi) at around 4am on 2nd September, when it is expected to be around mag 15. It is brightening rapidly at the moment. Here is an animation of its movement from 2018/08/30 21:16:33 - 21:22:47 UT taken from Tynemouth, UK. What I presume to be a satellite also flashes by too!

[40MB]

https://1drv.ms/v/s!Agvxu8wNOxpAfFIR0S5BJyuzpW0

nickjames's picture
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David, Thanks for the head's

David, Thanks for the head's up and the observation. It is always fun to track down these fairly large NEOs. Since it will have significant motion against the star background it is also a good check on your timing accuracy if you do some astrometry.

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I thought I'd have a go

I thought I'd have a go imaging it as it got dark here and here is a short movie showing it moving rapidly northwards. Each frame is a 60s exposure.

djswan2002's picture
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Movie

Absolutely superb Nick. The sky is very busy now isn't it! I see this all the time too.

Good plan about the astrometry. I've taken another sequence of images - after syncing the computer clock - and I'll do the measurements tomorrow.

nickjames's picture
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And here it is tonight. It is

And here it is tonight. It is currently moving at just over 23 arcsec/min.