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31429WT1190F: precoveries extracted, observations run back to 2009

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  • Bill Gray
    Nov 1, 2015
      Hello all,

      We still don't really know what it is, but we now know that
      WT1190F has been orbiting the earth since at least 2009 September 26.
      That pushes it back by over three years, and eliminates at least a
      few possible sources for this object. The new observations have been
      published at

      http://www.minorplanetcenter.net/iau/DASO/000000/DASO_000526.txt

      This is the result of precovery work by Eric Christensen and Alex
      Gibbs, who dug through archived images at CSS, and Marco Micheli,
      who looked through similar data at PanSTARRS. It's also due to
      Peter Birtwhistle having suggested that 9U01FF6, an object observed
      in 2009 and 2010 and then "lost", might be the same object as
      WT1190F.

      The linked orbit is at

      http://www.projectpluto.com/temp/mpec11.htm

      I've been getting various inquiries about this object, and have
      put up an FAQ (includes an orbit diagram and impact area maps) at

      http://projectpluto.com/temp/wt1190f.htm

      (doesn't mention this linkage yet, and speaks of the object as
      only having been tracked back to 2013... some updates will be needed.)

      -- Bill