Originally posted by MaxBlack
You should familiarize yourself with the term "retrograde" and see what that means to the matters at hand. Just look up retrograde and I will bet you
will see what I am referring to.
Planet X or a brown dwarf star has been scientifically proven to be in a retrograde orbit pattern...
As an amateur astronomer, I'm perfectly familiar with what "retrograde" means.
Unfortunatly for you, there are TWO meanings and you've just mixed them up.
Meaning 1 - as show in the animation on the (top right) wikipedia page, shows the orbit as you seem to expect, in the opposite direction...
Meaning 2 - the actual one referred to in the case of comet Elenin, is where the object (planet, asteroid or comet) merely seems to go backwards for a
while (weeks or a few months) because the earth is moving faster in its orbit than the object. But it is merely an optical illusion set against the
background stars, and not actually happening in the actual orbit.
More correctly called apparent retrograde motion, this movement is described in this page...
and this is the motion that comet Elenin has been experiencing recently... but its only a temporary visual effect.
Sorry for you, but its a beginners mistake.
Edit - for show and tell, I've found a finder chart of where the comet will be seen in the sky...
Now you see that its not a pure linear motion in one direction, but back and forward. Of course the comet really doesnt stop in its orbit and go
backwards for a while, its just due to the relative motion of trying to view a moving object while standing on another moving object.
For a while, the comet has apparent retrograde motion.
Just to repeat, this isnt anything specific to comet Elenin, ALL planets and other solar system stuff does this effect from time to time.
edit on 6-6-2011 by alfa1 because: (no reason given)