Biela, Comet 3D/

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Jean Louis Pons (1761—1831)


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A now-disintegrated periodic comet discovered in 1772 by the French amateur astronomer Jacques Laibats-Montaigne (1716–88), rediscovered in 1805 by J. L. Pons, and rediscovered again in 1826 by the Austrian amateur Wilhelm von Biela (1782–1856), who calculated the orbit and showed that all three objects were identical. At the return of 1845/6, the comet's nucleus was observed to have split into two. The double comet returned in 1852, but nothing was seen of it thereafter. Confirmation that it had disintegrated came in 1872 November when its debris produced a storm of Andromedid meteors. Comet Biela had an orbital period of 6.6 years, perihelion 0.86 AU, eccentricity 0.76, and inclination 12°.6.

http://cometography.com/pcomets/003d.html Information page at Cometography website.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics.

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