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Monday, August 26, 2013


NEO 2013 QR1 (And Others?) Sunday 25 August 2013.

2013 QR1, (large dark streak) and two possible companions (or internal reflections). Imaged with iTelescope T12, 11 frames of which only 8 had 2013 QR1 in them (it was moving really fast), the two other traces continued when 2013 QR1 was out of frame, and the middle trace overtook the upper trace, so I don't think they are internal scope reflections. Click to embiggen to see the two faint traces clearly. Animation of 8 frames with 2013 QR1 in the field. In the small version here you can just see the brighter of the two companions, if you click on the image and embiggen it, the third companion is visible if you squint (unless you really want a 25 Mb animation file it's not that clear)

NEO 2013 QR1 made a close approach to Earth on August 25, 19:31 UT. The 215 meter diameter rock came within 9 Earth - Moon distances. The Asteroid was moving at greater than 100"/ second, was around magnitude 15.5.

Unfortunately, the closest approach was out of reach of the iTelescopes, but I got it in the SSO scopes around 3 hours later.

I got a bit more than I bargained for though. Along with 2013 QR1 were two other fainter, fast movers. I don't know yet if they are known asteroids, or unknown asteroids, or even satellites. But I'll try and get them again tomorrow (the middle one probably not, it was moving faster than the other two and will probably be far way by tomorrow night).

I have no idea of how to do astrometry when the traces are streaks, so I don't know how to trace it back through existing MPC orbits. Anyone have any ideas?

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...not able to help thee on thine question ~ nonetheless ~ you've done most splendidly! ~ blessings to thee dear aussie neighbour!...(O:
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