C/2000 WM1 (LINEAR)

C/2000 WM1 (LINEAR) was discovered by LINEAR on November 16th 2000 as an object of magnitude 18. Due to its orbit and the relatively early discovery it was hoped that the comet might become a moderately bright naked-eye object around perihelion. This it duly did, reaching magnitude 3 during an outburst just after perihelion. This comet has a slightly hyperbolic orbit with perihelion at 0.55AU.


The light curve The light curve shown below is made up from 344 observations. The magnitudes listed as m2 are taken in R with a 10" aperture. CCD total magnitudes are taken with apertures from 0.2' to 4.7'. m1 is the total visual magnitude. After a rather disappointing photometric performance during its inbound phase the light curve became highly active in November 2001. A 2 magnitude outburst was seen that is best defined in the m2 data in the lower plot - this reached m1=5.5. A second outburst was seen that started 6 days after perihelion and led to a peak magnitude of m1=3.

Although the comet has faded considerably it is still being observed actively. Over the last few months the rate of fade has slowed considerably and the comet remains easily visible to CCD observers with telescopes of 20-25cm.





The absolute magnitude of C/2000 WM1 is 9.0 from the data above, making the comet a much smaller than average object.

The best fit to the light curve outside outburst is:

m1 = 9.0 + 5 log Delta + 7.0 log r


CCD observations in a 10 arcsecond aperture by:

  • Ramón Naves & Montse Campàs - MPC 213
  • Rolando Ligustri - MPC 235
  • Albert Sánchez - MPC 442
  • Miguel Camarasa - MPC 445
  • Salvador Sánchez & Juan Rodríguez - MPC 620
  • Fernanda Artigue - MPC 844
  • Juan Lacruz - MPC J87
  • Ricard Casas

CCD aperture photometry in apertures of 0'.2, 0'.8, 1'.0, 1'.1, 1'.2, 1'.3, 1'.5 and 1'.7 by:

  • Giovanni Sostero
  • P.Beltrame
  • R.Ligustri
  • V.Savani
  • G.Degano
  • V.Savani
  • M.Zorzenon
  • G.Romano
  • V.Savani

Visual data by:

  • Faustino García (Asturias, Spain)
  • Francisco Rodríguez (Gran Canaria, Spain)
  • Francisco Ocaña (Cuenca, Spain)
  • Federico Fernández (Spain)
  • Valentín Díaz (Elche, Spain)
  • J.Rodríguez (Santa Fe, Argentina)
  • Daniel Verde (Tenerife, Spain)
  • David Hernández (Tenerife, Spain)
  • Oswaldo González (Tenerife, Spain)


Última actualización 18/01/2003
Por M.R.Kidger