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Comet C/2015 D3 was discovered on 19 February 2015 with Pan-STARRS 1 telescope (Haleakala), that is about  months after its perihelion passage. Some prediscovery images of this comet were found: taken on 17 February 2015 by Space Surveillance Telescope (Atom Site) and 8 April 2013 by Siding Spring Survey. This comet was observed until 21 February 2020.

Comet had its closest approach to the Earth on 28 February 2016 (7.167 au), about 2 months before its perihelion passage.

Solutions given here are based on data spanning over 6.87 yr in a range of heliocentric distances: 10.46 au – 8.149 au (perihelion) – 11.49 au.

This Oort spike comet suffers slight planetary perturbations during its passage through the planetary system; however, these perturbations likely lead to escape the comet from the planetary zone on a hyperbolic orbit (see future barycentric orbits).

See also Królikowska and Dones 2023.

solution description
number of observations 282
data interval 2013 04 08 – 2018 02 13
data type perihelion within the observation arc (FULL)
data arc selection entire data set (STD)
range of heliocentric distances 10.46 au – 8.15 au (perihelion) – 9.03 au
detectability of NG effects in the comet's motion NG effects not determinable
type of model of motion GR - gravitational orbit
data weighting YES
number of residuals 549
RMS [arcseconds] 0.33
orbit quality class 1a+
orbital elements (heliocentric ecliptic J2000)
Epoch 2016 05 12
perihelion date 2016 04 30.78880394 ± 0.00118321
perihelion distance [au] 8.14877530 ± 0.00000841
eccentricity 1.00249983 ± 0.00000711
argument of perihelion [°] 2.849893 ± 0.000066
ascending node [°] 156.980463 ± 0.000006
inclination [°] 128.509312 ± 0.000013
reciprocal semi-major axis [10-6 au-1] -306.77 ± 0.87
Upper panel: 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.
Middle panel(s): O-C diagram for a given solution (sometimes in comparison to another solution available in CODE), where residuals in right ascension are shown using magenta dots and in declination by blue open circles.
Lowest panel: Relative weights for a given data set(s).