C/1978 R3 Machholz
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Comet C/1978 R3 was discovered on 12 September 1978 by Donald E. Machholz (Mt Loma Prita, California, USA), that is about a month after its perihelion passage.This comet was last observed on late September 1979.
Comet had its closest approach to the Earth on 15 October 1978 (1.510 au), about a month after discovery.
Solution given here is based on data spanning over 1.03 yr in a range of heliocentric distances from 1.82 au to 4.89 au.
This Oort spike comet suffers small planetary perturbations during its passage through the planetary system; these perturbations lead to a more tight future orbit.See also Królikowska 2020.

solution description
number of observations 52
data interval 1978 09 14 – 1979 09 25
data type observed only after perihelion (POST)
data arc selection entire data set (STD)
range of heliocentric distances 1.82 au – 4.89au
detectability of NG effects in the comet's motion NG effects not determinable
type of model of motion GR - gravitational orbit
data weighting NO
number of residuals 101
RMS [arcseconds] 1.50
orbit quality class 1b
orbital elements (heliocentric ecliptic J2000)
Epoch 1978 07 31
perihelion date 1978 08 13.66876338 ± 0.00248681
perihelion distance [au] 1.77155999 ± 0.00001702
eccentricity 1.00031780 ± 0.00004839
argument of perihelion [°] 224.751711 ± 0.001376
ascending node [°] 290.677938 ± 0.000269
inclination [°] 130.636641 ± 0.000149
reciprocal semi-major axis [10-6 au-1] -179.39 ± 27.31
Time distribution of positional observations with corresponding heliocentric (red curve) and geocentric (green curve) distance at which they were taken. The horizontal dotted line shows the perihelion distance for a given comet whereas vertical dotted line — the moment of perihelion passage.