NSR-2019 : an observation in remote

The 2019 edition of the Summer School on « Natural Space Risks » (NSR-2019) now ended. During this school we have dedicated sessions for observing solar system objects with the goal to perform astrometry and to analyze the data during a specific session later. During this nighttime practical, we observed solar system objects in remote mode by using the 1m telescope C2PU of Côte d’Azur Observatory .

20 students, interested by space debris and Near-Earth Objects, have participated to these sessions. They had in particular to select targets and to explain their choice to the participants on the basis of some scientific reasons. Three half nights had been dedicated to this exercise and two of them were enough clear to allow the observation. Badly known asteroids were selected and in particular a Near-Earth Asteroid extracted from the Near-Earth Object Confirmation Page of the Minor Planet Center. This object, provisionally named COV1TG2, has been catched in nine images on August 28 and its astrometry measured. But several hours later it has been revealed that it was not an asteroid but a comet, labelled C/2019 M3. Actually, this comet had been discovered on end of June by the ATLAS survey and its orbit was probably not well known which could explain it was on the NEOCP list. C/2019 M3 is a non periodic comet and our astrometric measures will cetainly be useful to contribute to the improvement of its ephemerides.

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C/2019 M3 (credit WT/C2PU/OCA)
C/2019 M3 (credit WT/C2PU/OCA)