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Week 17


Comet of the Week: Arend-Roland 1956h

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Special Topic: Designations and Names of “Small Bodies”

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APRIL 20, 1910: Comet 1P/Halley passes through perihelion at a heliocentric distance of 0.587 AU. Halley’s 1910 return, which is described in a previous “Special Topics” presentation, was quite favorable, with a close approach to Earth (0.15 AU) and the exhibiting of the longest cometary tail ever recorded.  APRIL 20, 2025: NASA’s Lucy mission is …

Perihelion: 1957 April 8.03, q= 0.316 AU  There weren’t any bright comets that appeared the year I was born, 1958, but two bright comets appeared the previous year. These two objects were the brightest comets to become easily visible from the northern hemisphere since the return of Comet 1P/Halley in 1910.  The first of the …

Throughout “Ice and Stone 2020” I refer to numerous specific objects, including in all of my “Comet of the Week” presentations as well as in several of my “Special Topics” presentations and in the lists of weekly historical events. It is appropriate, then, to discuss how these various objects are designated and named.  The conventions …