After two months of job duties last days finally I have had the time to write this article regarding my observations results at this two amazing objects.
Haumea is a dwarf planet with an elipsoidal shape discovered in 2004 and orbiting the Sun in 285 years at an average distance of 43 astronomical units. It is considered to be the third largest trans-neptunian object after Pluto and Eris and her name comes from the mother goddess of the Hawaiian Islands where it is associated with birth and fertility. Among trans-neptunian objects, Haumea is a rather an exotic planet because it is the first object of this type around which a system of rings has been detected, but also because it rotates very quickly around his axis. The diagram and orbital elements of the planet Haumea can be viewed here:
The shape of Haumea and the ring can be viewed here:
On the night of May 16, 2020, we made scientific observations on this object for searching the rotation period based on data obtained in almost 5 hours of observations. Using the Tycho program we found that Haumea rotates around the axis in 3.96 hours, the obtained photometric report being sent to the Asteroid Lightcurve Photometry Database (ALCDEF).
At the time of observation, Haumea had a magnitude of 17.3 (V) and was about 2 degres south of the star Arcturus. An animation with its movement during the 5 hours of observations can be found here:
The integration of all the frames taken in our session is here:
In the same CCD field, we also identified the variable star LINEAR 11337303, to which we made observations in the following weeks to obtain the light curve. This star is a W Ursae Majoris eclipse variable star with a rotation period of six hours.
We used for all the observations the 20’ AG Optical telescope located in Namibia. Thank you Lukas for this amazing oportunity, the aquisition worked like a breeze and the frames had a very good quality for making photometry.
Astroclubul Bucuresti, Romania