Comet C/2010 X1 (Elenin) – the first comet discovered with CoLiTec (CLT) software

Discovery of the Comet Elenin C/2010 X1 (Elenin) with CoLiTec (CLT) application, attracted vivid interest of mass media.

The comet C/2010 X1 (Elenin) was discovered December 10, 2010 within the scope of asteroids’ program of Russian project ISON. The discovery was made by Leonid Elenin – scientific associate of Keldysh Institute of applied mathematics (RAS). More information on discovery, plus interview with discoverer («Газета.Ru») can be found through on-line media sources.

Leonid Elenin supports a news blog on SpaceObs.org (this blog has recently entered 20 best scientific blogs in Russia), where he shares new observations of the comet and other interesting facts about it.

In addition, there is a very interesting section dedicated to the comet C/2010 X1 on astro-forum.

You can find information about the Comet Elenin all through the Internet (for example: site JPL Solar System Dynamics (NASA), in database of Solar System minor planets’ section). Plus, there is an applet for visualization of comet’s diagrammatic movement (setting [show orbit diagram]).

According to MPC data, the Comet has 1.8396 degrees inclination (dihedral angle between plane of comet’s motion and ecliptic), 0.48244 AU perihelion, that matches Mercury orbit and 1.00003559 eccentricity, that ranges the Comet in hyperbolic class. September 10, 2011 the Comet Elenin will pass the perihelion.

The comet’s motion parameters are unique.



This comet has the smallest perihelion distance and the smallest inclination towards ecliptic plane among all observed hyperbolic and parabolic comets (coming from Oort cloud).

At the moment the Comet is passing asteroids’ Main belt and it may collide with some unknown asteroids. That may slightly change parameters of comet’s orbit. The discoverer – Leonid Elenin – estimates and specifies in his blog all possible approaches of the comet C/2010 X1 to known asteroids.

The publication of information about the Comet provoked several questions among astronomy professionals and amateurs. Western media abounds in sensational propositions, pretending discovered object to be Nibiru (mythological wandering Solar System planet).

NASA experts state that the Comet Elenin represents no threat to our planet and cannot be Nibiru.

Leonid Elenin doesn’t take seriously identification of C/2010 X1 with planet Nibiru and call such ideas nothing but “virus”. He says: “That’s just a comet coming close to the Earth. It has quite happened before and it will happen in future. I think we have to enjoy the coming, totally safe for earthmen, event. Let’s admire the beauty of space around us…”.