15 Jun 2016

Alert: Two white spots now visible on the planet Neptune

dpm20151115_1058bNeptune2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dpm20151115_1058On 11 June at 12:51 UT, Australian amateurs Darryl Milika and Pat Nicholas imaged two bright spots on Neptune using a C14 and IR 610nm filter.

Neptune lies in the constellation Pisces: RA 22h 55m DEC –7 49’ 20” Mag +5.9

These spots have been confirmed by Ricardo Hueso in professional observations made by the team at the Calar Alto observatory in Spain using a 2.2m telescope (Agustín Sánchez-Lavega) on 17 May.

One has also been imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope. This is another set of images  from 1998.

hs-1998-34-a-webThis is the second time that Darrl Milika & Pat Nicholas have seen bright spots on the planet Neptune, they also saw a significantly sized white spot last November that is shown here.

Ricardo Hueso has also kindly provided a provisional ephemeris based on observation to date for the two objects. This is reproduced below with permission.

These spots are within the imaging capability of those with larger telescopes and further observations are urgently required.

2016-June-16 11:50:55 353.5
2016-June-17 06:13:50 44.3
2016-June-18 00:36:44 95.1
2016-June-18 18:59:39 145.8
2016-June-19 13:22:34 196.6
2016-June-20 07:45:29 247.4
2016-June-21 02:08:24 298.1
2016-June-21 20:31:19 348.9
2016-June-22 14:54:14 39.7
2016-June-23 09:17:09 90.5
2016-June-24 03:40:04 141.2
2016-June-24 22:02:59 192.0

2016-June-25 16:25:53 242.8
2016-June-26 10:48:48 293.5
2016-June-27 05:11:43 344.3
2016-June-27 23:34:38 35.1
2016-June-28 17:57:33 85.8
2016-June-29 12:20:28 136.6
2016-June-30 06:43:23 187.4
2016-July-01 01:06:18 238.1
2016-July-01 19:29:13 288.9
2016-July-02 13:52:08 339.7
2016-July-03 08:15:02 30.5
2016-July-04 02:37:57 81.2

Mike Foulkes Saturn Section Director: British Astronomical Association. 

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