31st Annual Meeting of the DPS, October 1999
Session 17. Comet Comae Posters
Poster Group I, Monday-Wednesday, October 11, 1999, , Kursaal Center

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[17.09] Comparison of Long-term Activity of Comet Hale-Bopp at Visible and Mm-wavelengths

M. Womack (St. Cloud State University), A. Homich (University of Minnesota)

Here we compare the long-term behavior of comet Hale-Bopp at visual wavelengths with the production rates of CO and HCN. Absolute visual magnitudes were calculated from over 2000 entries selected from a group of 16 experienced observers who reported their observations to the Comet Quarterly. We further restricted the sample to to select the best set of visible observations of this comet from 7 - 1 AU to date. The data were first searched by independent observer to search for outbursts and conformity of the observations, then normalized to the average reliable reported magnitude and then saved as a final corrected dataset. The data were then studied as a group to study the overall behavior of the comet pre-vs. post- perihelion. Although the overall visual magnitude (which arises primarily from reflection off dust particles) is not expected to be well-correlated with CO and HCN gaseous production, the behavior of the gas and dust were compared to search for possible relationships.

This work was supported by a grant from the NSF CAREER Program and a grant from the joint NASA/NSF Hale-Bopp program.

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