30P/Reinmuth 1

30P/Reinmuth 1 was discovered by Karl Reinmuth at Heidelberg on February 22nd 1928 at magnitude 12, although it was later discovered that it had been observed as early as January 26th 1928 at Barcelona and at Heideberg on the 29th. There was even a third unrecognised image in Moscow on February 12th. Since then it has been observed at nine further returns (1935, 1950, 1958, 1965, 1973, 1980, 1988, 1995 and 2002) making the current apparition its 10th observed return. Only the 1942 return, which was unfavorable, was not observed.

The comet is of short period. Initially the period was 7.23 years and the perihelion distance 1.86AU, but a fairly close approach to Jupiter in 1937 changed the orbit and moved it to a slightly longer period (a maximum of 7.69 years) and a more distant perihelion (2.04AU), making it much fainter, such that it could no longer get brighter than magnitude 17. Since then the comet has progressively moved back to its earlier orbit and currently has a period of 7.32 years and perihelion at 1.87AU.


The 2002 apparition

30P/Reinmuth will pass perihelion on December 24th and will peak at around magnitude 14.5. Like many old, evolved comets it brightens rather rapidly as it approaches the Sun. This is due to the mantle of dust that has built up over the nucleus that prevents the Sun's heat reaching the ices until sufficient heat has leaked through. The comet will thus increase in brightness very rapidly through November and December. This is a much better return than 1995 when the comet never brightened more than to magnitude 16.5.

Maximum brightness was reached approximately 2 months after perihelion. As caan be appreciated from the CCD total magnitude estimates, the comet reached about magnitude 13 at maximum.

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
  • Diego Rodríguez – MPC 458
  • Francesc Baldris - A01
  • Josep Lluís Salto - A02
  • - A03
  • Carles Pineda - MPC J91

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

  • Ramón Naves & Montse Campàs - MPC 213
  • Rolando Ligustri



Última actualización 30/05/2003
Por M.R.Kidger