CCD photometry of comet 46P/Wirtanen

I. M. Cartwright*, A. Fitzsimmons, I. P. Williams, S. N. Kemp

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


CCD observations of 46P/Wirtanen obtained in February 1992, when the comet was at a post-perihelion heliocentric distance of R = 1.93 AU are analysed. At this time the comet possessed a weak dust coma extending > 5000 km from the nucleus. The observed brightness distribution reveals no sign of any central nucleus, and results in a firm upper limit to the radius of the nucleus of re < 2.8 km (assuming an albedo of 4%), similar to that found by Jorda and Rickman (Planet. Space Sci. 43, 575-579, 1995) and consistent with the reported detection by Boehnhardt et al. (Astron. Astrophys. 1997, in press). Wirtanen was also searched for in June 1995 and August 1995, but this was unsuccessful in detecting the comet. An upper limit to the nucleus size of 8.2 km was obtained from these data, consistent with the values above.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)821-826
Number of pages6
JournalPlanetary and Space Science
Issue number7 SPEC. ISS.
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jul 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'CCD photometry of comet 46P/Wirtanen'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this