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Pic du Midi Observatory Image of Comet Hale-Bopp


Observers: Jean Lecacheux, Francois Colas
Location: Pic du Midi Observatory, France
Date: April 1, 1997 05:03 UT

Image 2 hours after perihelion showing a double shell system

This image was taken on April 1st, at 5h03 UT just after comet perihelion (April 1st, 3H18 UT). This image is representative of our extensive comet survey using Gunn 6 filter and the 105 cm telescope. The comet is now difficult to observe in the morning sky, we can point the telescope only 1 hour before sunrise, the comet is at only 10 degrees of elevation.

The image was processed with a radial gradient to enhance the shell structure. The dust shells visible since the end of january are now showing a double structure. Each "wave system" have the same interval but not the same curvature. This double structure have to be study in relation with the two jets now clearly visible, close to the nucleus.

Contact: Francois Colas (

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