Observer: Bob Hatfield
Location: Datil, New Mexico
Date: March 25, 1996 04:07-04:23 UT
I observed the comet from a very dark site at about 8000 ft. near Datil, New Mexico. The comet was roughly 2 degrees in diameter, and the tail stretched to more than 40 degrees in length! The nucleus of the comet continues to change in appearance, and I took some more ST5 images. Visually the comet is stunning, with a long blue white tail, and through the telescope the nucleus is definitely yellow. The specs for the images are listed below: All images were obtained on 3-25-96 with ST5 ccd through C11 telescope at f6.3 with the ccd temp. at -30C.
First image is 16 x 1 =16 second exposure at low resolution (20 x 20 micron pixels)at 04:23 UTC.
Second image is a false color version of first image.
Third image is a 0.05 second exposure taken at 04:31 UTC also at low res. Note the activity near the nucleus.
Fourth image is a 1 second exp at High Res. (10 x 10 Micron pixels) taken at 04:08 UTC.
Fifth image is a 1 second exp at high res. taken at 04:07 UTC processed in false color.
All images have been flat fielded. The reason for the low resolution images is that the high res images took too long for the track and accumulate mode to keep up with the rapid movement of the comet.
Comet 1996 B2 Hyakutake Home Page