DPS Meeting, Madison, October 1998
Session 31. Comets II
Contributed Oral Parallel Session, Wednesday, October 14, 1998, 3:35-4:45pm, Madison Ballroom C

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[31.03] Morphology of HCN and CN in Comet Hale-Bopp

L.M. Woodney, M. F. A'Hearn, D.D. Wellnitz (U.Md.), D.G. Schleicher, T.L. Farnham (Lowell Obs.), T.C. Cheung (Brandeis U.), J.P. McMullin (NRAO), J.M. Veal, L.E. Snyder (U. Il.), I. de Pater, J.R. Forster, M.C.H. Wright (Berkeley), P. Palmer (U. Chicago), Y.-J. Kuan (IAA, Academia Sinica), N. H. Samarasinha (NOAO)

Near the perihelion of Comet Hale-Bopp (1995 O1) our multi-institution team coordinated imaging of the comet in both HCN and CN. Hale-Bopp is the first comet for which there has been simultaneous high resolution imaging of this parent and daughter pair, so that this is the first time we can examine the morphology of their relationship. A greater understanding of the HCN/CN relationship will place constraints on the much disputed nature of other proposed CN parents. Of particular interest is what these HCN images can reveal about the nature of the association of the nuclear HCN source with the CN jets since we have enough spatial resolution to detect HCN jets if there is sufficient signal.

Our HCN maps of the J=1\to0 transition at 3mm were made with the Berkeley-Illinois-Maryland Association (BIMA) Array in Northern California, with a beam size of ~9''. The maps have been created so that they are phased with the rotational period of the comet to reduce the smearing of any spatial features seen in the maps. At each phase examined, data spanning several days has been summed both to increase the signal to noise ratio and give more complete uv coverage than a 1 to 2 hour observation would provide on its own. These maps will be compared to similarly phased narrowband CN images obtained at Lowell Observatory taken near or at the same time as the HCN images.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: woodney@astro.umd.edu

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