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Message Subject BREAKING: Scientist claims comet ISON has companions!
Poster Handle Dr. Astro
Post Content
What a dipshit. He's full of shit. ISON does not have any "companions." I'll tell what happened, he saw this image floating around on conspiracy forums like this one claiming it shows "companions" near comet ISON and he latched onto it:
Thread: Comet C/2012 S1 ISON is being followed
These sorts of images often show asteroids as well as hot pixels, but those asteroids are nowhere near the comet, and the hot pixels are not even real objects at all. I'm betting he didn't even notice the asteroid at the top of the above image:
[link to www.godlikeproductions.com]

Hot pixels don't even form point-spread functions, which is why that dipshit McCanney exclaimed that it "hadn't formed a coma." The lack of a point-spread function means it's not a real object, it's just noise in the imager. Asteroids and other real objects in space such as 2002 TY164 do, however, making them easy to distinguish. Obviously McCanney did not realize that.
 Quoting: Dr. Astro

 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 32727656

Thanks for reposting for me. What started as a mistaken but easily corrected observation by a GLP'er (or other forum dweller) looking at amateur images of comet ISON is quickly snowballing now that McCanney has latched onto it. I should do a youtube video about this while the claim is still young. I may try to get in touch with the original astrophotographer, Pete Lawrence, to see if he can lend me the original image data.
 Quoting: Dr. Astro

Pete wrote back while I was webcasting. He's not able to send me the image files right now, but he confirmed it was just hot pixels. Here's what he wrote:

"It is definitely noise (my name) - if I overlay the frames directly, the dots are in the same place. The original frames were dark frame calibrated but I'm guessing the temperature varied throughout the shoot so some got through. I'm on a location shoot at the moment so no access to the originals at the moment but feel free to quote me.


If anyone wishes to confirm that he said this, his email address is available on his website:
[link to www.digitalsky.org.uk]
 Quoting: Dr. Astro
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