37th DPS Meeting, 4-9 September 2005
Session 42 Deep Impact III
Oral, Wednesday, September 7, 2005, 4:30-6:00pm, Law LG19

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[42.06] Observations of Comet 9P/Tempel 1 Around the Time of Encounter with Deep Impact

A. L. Cochran (McDonald Observatory), K. J. Meech (U. Hawaii), W. M. Jackson (U. C. Davis), E. S. Barker (NASA/JSC), J. G. Ries (U. Texas), H. Tran (Keck Observatory)

We report observations of comet 9P/Tempel 1 around the time of the impact of the comet by the Deep Impact spacecraft. The observations were obtained on 4 -- 6 July UT using the HIRES spectrograph on the Keck I telescope, as well as the Large Cassegrain Spectrograph (LCS) on the 2.7m telescope and the Prime Focus Camera (PFC) on the 0.8m telescope of McDonald Observatory. The HIRES observations utilize the blue cross-disperser and cover the spectral bandpass from 300 -- 600 nm. The LCS is a long slit CCD spectrograph and covers the bandpass from 305nm through 570nm. The PFC observations concentrated most on R-band imaging to look for morphological changes. In addition, we have LCS observations obtained during the spring of 2005, in advance of the impact. The Keck observations show significant changes in the continuum which results from increased scattering due to release of dust. In addition, we noted changes in the structure of various bands with time, as well as strong, changing asymmetries in the distribution of the gas. Some emission features were transient, disappearing after the first night. The Texas work was supported by NASA grant NNG04G162G. W. Jackson was supported by NASA grant NAG5-12124. The DI team support was provided through the University of Maryland and the University of Hawaii subcontract Z667702 which was awarded under prime contract NASW-00004 from NASA. Some of the data presented herein were obtained at the W.M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California and the National Aeronautics and space Administration. The Observatory was made possible by the generous financial support of the W.M. Keck Foundation."

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #3
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