Last updated 02 Apr 2024

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Useful Links

Observer tools

NEO Confirmation page (NEOCP) Ephemerides configurable for your observatory for newly discovered NEOs, comets and other interesting objects.
MPC Ephemeris Service (MPES) Ephemerides configurable for your observatory for all minor planets and comets.
  NEOfixer Provides independent predictions for objects currently on the MPC's NEO Confirmation page (NEOCP). NEOfixer aims to help optimize the discovery and follow-up of Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) by providing observers with targeting recommendations, specific to their site. Observers can contribute by sending status information about the objects they are targeting to NEOfixer.
  Scout Provides independent predictions for objects currently on the MPC's NEO Confirmation page (NEOCP)
  NEOCC Priority List NEO planning tool classifying the need to observe NEOs especially newly discovered objects into four categories, urgent, necessary, useful and low priority
MPC NEAObs NEA Observation Planning Aid from the Minor Planet Center.
Build a customised list of NEOs by specifying a number of selection parameters, including the current sky uncertainty, to help choose NEOs to observe that require astrometry.
NEODys Risk page Similar listings from NEODys and JPL of currently observable and lost NEOs with possible impact solutions, generally where the orbital elements are not known very accurately and therefore require further observations urgently.
  JPL Risk page (SENTRY)
Minor Planet Checker The Minor Planet Center provide this page for observers to check whether an object is a previously known minor planet. Enter the RA and Dec (or paste in a standard MPC formatted observation) and the page will list known minor planets in the vicinity at the time (but note that Minor Planets observed at only one opposition that have not been seen for several years are not included, so always send in suspects to the MPC for full checking)
  NEO Rating Page Given two or more observations of a moving object this page calculates the probability of it being a Near Earth Object. Scores of 50% or more are required for an object to be included on the NEO Confirmation Page (NEOCP).

Community

Asteroid/Comet Connection (A/CC) The Tracking News (formally Major News about Minor Objects) Daily news of astrometry published by the IAU MPC from professionals & amateur observers around the world + Risk monitoring results. Published by Bill Allen.

The Asteroid/Comet Connection News pages published until 16 September 2007 (but still available on the A/CC site) have given a very interesting account of issues about currently observable objects, together with plenty of background.


Asteroid/Comet Connection (A/CC) Earth's Busy Neighborhood. For Near Earth objects currently within 10 Lunar Distances of the Earth a graphic is provided showing positions on the sky, together with detailed information on each object.
Asteroid/Comet Connection Observatory Links Very comprehensive listings of the web sites of observatories involved in astrometry. Presented alphabetically and by country.
Minor Planet Mailing List (MPML) Discussion forum "for the active Asteroid and Comet researcher... provides a way for researchers in this communitiy at all levels an opportunity to share information, astrometric and photometric techniques or to request specific observations of various objects"
  Comets Mailing List Discussion forum "for observers and anyone else interested in comets. This includes discussion about visual, photographic and CCD observing as well as about astrometric, orbital, photometric, hunting or historical aspects." 
Starlust Informative and easy-to-read articles aimed at amateur astronomers, created by Tom Urbain. A wide range of subjects are covered, including useful guides on choosing a telescope, plenty of observing guides and more. Check out his Periodic Table of Deep-Sky Objects!
British Astronomical Association Supporting amateur astronomers since 1890

Reference

Guide to Minor Body Astrometry The Minor Planet Center's guide to starting an astrometric program. Essential reading for budding astrometrists.
  Small-Body Database Lookup JPL tool providing information for comets and asteroids including close approaches, physical parameters, orbital elements and diagrams etc.
Recent MPECs The 100 most recent MPC Electronic Circulars (MPECs) and access to previous MPECs, giving details of astrometry, orbital elements and summary ephemerides of NEOs and comets
Previous NEO Confirmation Page Objects Archived contents of the MPC's Previous NEO Confirmation Page Objects page (which only provides details for the last few months). The archived list contains details from 2002 to the present (a few gaps are indicated within the list).
Editorial Notices & Announcements published by the MPC in MPECs A compilation of Notices and Announcements published in the Minor Planet Center's Electronic Circulars that are otherwise difficult to locate.
  MPEC stats A useful set of pages produced by Jost Jahn, analysing MPC Electronic Circulars (MPECs) in various ways.

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