Imaging of Comet C/1995 O1 (Hale-Bopp) on the WIYN with narrowband CN and continuum filters around perihelion (March - May, 1997)

B. E. A. Mueller, N. H. Samarasinha, M. J. S. Belton (KPNO/NOAO)

Comet C/1995 O1 (Hale-Bopp) was imaged on the WIYN telescope with the new NASA comet filters in CN ( tex2html_wrap_inline12 Å) and dust (blue continuum, tex2html_wrap_inline14 Å) before, at, and after perihelion for morphological studies. We have data for March 13-15, April 1-2, 14-16, 18-19, 23, and for May 5-6, 1997.

Changes from night to night are apparent in both the dust and the CN images. Repeatability of features over the whole observation range is also present. It is clear that more than one jet has to be responsible for the structure and the changes seen in these images. The dust and CN images are very different; there are structures present on the anti-sunward direction in CN but not in dust. In nearly simultaneous dust and CN images, there are some features that are co-spatial.

Possible scenarios and implications for the rotational state will be discussed. Numerical modelling of the CN features in our images is presented by Samarasinha et al., this meeting.