Neo Planner V2.4  -  Execute Planning  -  Explanations


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Copyright: The data comes from official access to web services from MPC

With comets y/n:

Select here whether you want to include comets in the planning or not.

Neo Planner calculates observation times in R.A. order of currently visible comets according to the official publication of the MPC and additionally the most recently observed comets from CometasObs.
The reason for including the CometasObs observations lies in the sometimes considerable delay of the MPC in the publication of the last observations.

More information on the inclusion of comets in the planning process can be found here.

NEO from year:

NEO with provisional designations are always included in the planning. Enter the starting year of designations of objects not yet numbered.

These objects have not yet been finally numbered and require further follow-up observations. Recently discovered NEO, in particular, require further observation to improve their orbital elements.
The uncertainty factor U plays a special role in the orbital elements. Objects with a U factor of 3 or greater cannot be safely recovered in coming orbits. U = 0 is the best value.
It is therefore a special and valuable task for amateurs to help improve the orbital elements of the NEO.

NEO to year:

Enter the final year of designations of objects not yet numbered.

With numbered asteroids y/n:

Numbered objects are not in the foreground of the observation priorities. However, there may be reasons for observing objects whose orbit is very well known.
In the case of numbered NEOs such as 99944 Apophis or other asteroids that are passing very close to Earth, there may well be an interest in tracking such NEOs.
In particular, to make meaningful videos for presentation purposes or for other reasons, it can make perfect sense also to follow such objects.
In addition, around the full moon there is a good opportunity for diligent observers to include numbered NEOs in the list to compensate for the lack of other objects.

That is why NEO Planner offers the option of including numbered objects in the selection.

The determination of the observable NEO per observatory code is no longer carried out via the NEAm00.txt of the MPC, but via the new API Web Service of the Horizons system of the JPL.
This significantly reduces the loading time of the NEO's ephemeris, which is good for the overall performance of the Execute process.
The loading of all observable numbered NEO of the coming night is now carried out according to the parameters defined by NEO Planner such as minimum altitude or limitation of magnitude.
If numbered objects are selected, please also enter a limit for the magnitude V here.

With own object list y/n:

Depending on the interest, the observer can create his own object list with any asteroids, which can be included in the planning selection area.
Application examples are the self-discovered numbered asteroids, which mostly come from the main belt, or discovered objects that are not yet numbered.

With the help of this function, a previously popular follow-up list of your own objects is no longer necessary.
T
hese objects are included in the planning process and taken into account in the final list, if the selection was successful according to the settings parameters.

Execute start time in hours and minutes::

If you enter "auto", the local start time of the planning is determined from the current GeoSetting data. First the current sunset and sunrise times are loaded.
Then the offset times from the common restrictions settings are used to calculate the start and end times. In the Revise planning display, this data is displayed as observation slot start and end times.
The calculated start time is used when planning the observation of the first object. If you want a later start time for the first object, a local time between 3:00 p.m. and 11:59 p.m. can be entered here.
The times of all following objects are then adjusted accordingly.

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The following three brightness parameters are read from the setting file and also updated there when changes are made in the Execute Window.

All NEOCP object with V = -30 to  xx.x:

Confirming NEOCP objects is both a motivation and a challenge. Experience has shown that observers pay special attention to these objects.
The confirmation of new objects, but also the follow-up observation, is important in order to allow as many measurements as possible to flow into
the calculation of the orbital elements for a retrieval in later orbits.

All NEO with V = -30 to xx.x::

As a rule, every NEO observer has experience with the maximum NEO observable for him in relation to their brightness and should therefore enter his personal experience value here.
NEO Planner will therefore only select those objects whose Vmag values are numerically below the settings value.
The apparent speed does not play a role at this point when considering the maximum usable brightness.

The following model is used to select the NEO:

First it is checked whether the Vmag of the ephemeris is maximum 0.4 mag weaker than the limit value in the settings. If so, the object will continue to be considered.

Second, if the apparent speed in the ephemeris is less than 100.00 s / min, the average Vmag of the last 10 observations is used for the selection of the object,
otherwise the Vmag of the ephemeris.

The reason for taking into account the apparent speed at the time of the ephemeris is a possible strong change in the Vmag compared to previous observations..
At speeds over 100 seconds / minute at the time of the ephemeris we always use MPC's designated Vmag of the ephemeris for selection.
Otherwise fast objects might not be taken into account.

In additon, during the calculation of the exposure times, the selected NEO are subjected to a special Vmag consideration.
See the explanations for the revise button in the Preparation / Execute Planning tab

All Comets with V = -30 to xx.x::

With comets, compared to NEO, you have to apply slightly different standards with regard to the Vmag selection. Since comets usually appear spotty on the CCD image,
the maximum usable brightness should be set somewhat higher than with NEO. In addition, comets move at far greater distances from the Earth,
which largely excludes a significant change in measured brightness.
29P SCHWASSMANN/WACHMANN with its regularly occurring outbursts in brightness is certainly an exception here just like outbreaks in other comets,
but is generally not taken into account.

The real brightness of comets is actually often very different from the brightness we find in the ephemeris of the MPC.
Therefore to calculate the exposure times, NEO Planner always uses the average Vmag of the last 10 observations, which are determined from the last publishing by the MPC
with MPEC XXX: OBSERVATIONS AND ORBITS OF COMETS AND A / OBJECTS.

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Copyright: The author of NEO Planner and all sites of this web is Bernhard Haeusler, Dettelbach, Germany, all rights reserved