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A&A Supplement series, Vol. 129, May I 1998, 489-493

Received August 21; accepted October 20, 1997

Polarimetric observations of the comet Hale-Bopp

S. Ganesh - U.C. Joshi - K.S. Baliyan - M.R. Deshpande

Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad - 380 009, India


The continuum polarization observations, spread over a period from October 1996 to May 1997, of the coma region of comet Hale Bopp are made at various phase angles, varying from 17.1 to 47.4 degrees, using IAU/IHW filter set. The linear polarization measured through 3650, 4845 and 6840 Å  bands shows stronger wavelength dependence as compared to what is seen in comet Halley at similar phase angles. Comparisons are made with Comet Halley polarization properties and it is inferred that Comet Hale Bopp has smaller grains than those found for Comet Halley. However, this comet shows similarity with Comet Halley so far as the albedo of the grains is concerned. This comet appears to belong to the high polarization class in the classification scheme based on polarization characteristics.

keywords: polarization -- comet: P/Halley; Hale-Bopp C/1995 O1

Copyright by the European Southern Observatory (ESO)