StormEffects

Nightscapes & Deep Sky Colors

Astrophotography © Brian A. Morganti


 

Comet  Lovejoy C/2013 R1

December 2013

 

Comet Lovejoy C/2013 R1 was streaking though our skies largely unnoticed throughout November while the buzz about Comet ISON commanded all the attention.  The discovery of C/2013 R1 by amateur Australian astronomer Terry Lovejoy was announced on Sept. 9 after two nights of photographic observations with an 8-inch (20 cm) Schmidt-Cassegrain reflector. When nabbed, the comet was a faint midge of about +14.5 magnitude crossing the border between Orion and Monoceros. Subsequent observations by other amateur astronomers peg it a bit brighter at 14.0 with a small, condensed coma.

C/2013 R1 made its closest approach to Earth on 19 November 2013 at a distance of  36,880,000 miles and reached an apparent magnitude of about 4.5.  On 27 November 2013 the comet was in the constellation of Canes Venatici, near the bottom of the handle of the Big Dipper. From 28 November until 4 December 2013, the comet was in the constellation Boötes. On 1 December 2013 it passed the star Beta Boötis. From 4 December until 12 December 2013, the comet was in the constellation Corona Borealis.

From 12 December until 14 January 2014, the comet will be in the constellation Hercules. The comet reaches perihelion (closest approach to the Sun) on 22 December 2013 at a distance of 0.81AU from the Sun.

December 11, 2013 6:00am

Comet Lovejoy C/2013 R1

Magnitude +5.5    TeleVue NP101is 432mm f4.3T1i Unguided    Ten 1 minute exposure @ ISO 800

 


December 16, 2013 5:45am

Magnitude +5.9    TeleVue NP101is 432mm f4.3T1i Unguided    Nine 75 second exposures @ ISO 800

                                                                        

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