oa Journal of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Visualising the orbit of a comet

Volume 2, Issue 5
  • ISSN :



When a new comet has been discovered, it is the usual practice to compute a preliminary parabolic orbit as soon as the three observations of the comet which are necessary for this purpose have been secured. This preliminary orbit will represent the movement of the comet along the short arc used in the computations, but may not represent the movement of the comet with any exactness over longer periods of time.

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