The nucleus of the comet C/2019 Y4 (ATLAS), which could become the comet of the year and the brightest for the last seven years, really breaks up. This is confirmed by images obtained by different ground-based telescopes, which show at least two separated from the core fragment, it is reported portal The Astronomer”s Telegram.
Long-period comet C/2019 Y4 (ATLAS) was opened on December 28, 2019 with an automated system to find dangerous for the Earth celestial bodies in the ATLAS, the period of its revolution is 5476 years. Perihelion the comet will pass may 31, 2020, at this point she will be inside mercury’s orbit and with the Ground as much as possible will converge on may 23, 2020.
Previously, it was expected that the comet will become visible to the naked eye in mid-may and will be the brightest for the last seven years, but in early April it became clear that this may not happen due to the outbreak of the destruction of the comet’s nucleus. Pictures taken April 9 and 10 by using a 40 cm telescope, SLT (Super-Light Telescope), and 12 April with LОT meter telescope (Lulin One-meter Telescope) at the Observatory Liulin in China confirmed the suspicions of astronomers and showed the presence of at least two components in close proximity to the comet’s nucleus, which gradually away from him.
The distance between the core and the fragment 1 is about 3400 kilometers, and the distance between fragments 1 and 2 is about 1,600 kilometers. The decay of the nucleus is confirmed by other ground-based observatories, and fragmented nucleus are available for observations for all interested in large telescopes with diameters of 15 inches. Thus, comet C/2019 Y4 (ATLAS) finally lost the opportunity to become the comet of the year.