While a couple of promising comets have fizzled out this spring, the slow and steady Comet C/2017 T2 (PanSTARRS) is keeping astrophotographers happy as it moves through the northern constellation Ursa Major. On May 24, the comet passed the lovely pair spiral galaxies M81 and M82 near the bowl of the Big Dipper. The event was framed spectacularly in the above image by Terry Hancock and Tom Masterson using the Takahashi E-180 Astrograph at Grand Mesa Observatory in Colorado. This image is a testament to a high level of expertise and it shows how astrophotography at the hands of skilled and talented practitioners can approach high art [Read more…] about Galaxies and Comet C/2017 T2 (PanSTARRS)Share This:
At any particular time, a half-dozen or more comets are visible with a good-sized amateur telescope. But a bright comet is a once-in-a-decade event at best, and a Great Comet, one that grows bright enough to capture wide attention, is rarer still. Recently there have been two Great Comets visible to observers in the southern hemisphere, Comet McNaught in 2007 and Comet Lovejoy in 2011. But it’s been a long drought for stargazers in the northern hemisphere, where no spectacular comet has been seen since 1997 when the mighty Comet C/1995 O1, better known as Comet Hale-Bopp, barreled in from the outer solar system and put on one of the most watched celestial shows in modern history [Read more…] about A Look Back at Comet Hale-BoppShare This:
The Rosetta spacecraft made its final maneuver around the Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67p) in 2016 and made a controlled hard landing. Rosetta had accompanied the comet for more than 2 years, measured valuable scientific data, brought a lander on to the comet’s surface and took vast numbers of pictures.
In 2017 the European Space Agency released over 400,000 images from the Rosetta mission. Based on these images, motion designer Christian Stangl and composer Wolfgang Stangl worked together to create this short (but quite astonishing) film.
The sequences are digitally enhanced real-footage from the probe.
Watch the beauty of an active alien body, far out in the dephts of our solar system.Share This:
A little periodic comet is visiting the inner solar system over the next few months. Comet 45/P Honda–Mrkos–Pajdušáková, a tiny piece of ice and dust left over from the earliest days of the solar system, moves periodically around the Sun every 5.25 years. It made its closest approach to the Sun on December 31, 2016 and it’s visible now. As it passes close to Earth in February, it will brighten and appear to move quickly across the sky from day to day. You’ll need binoculars to see it, but it’s worth following this little leftover hunk of the early solar system [Read more…] about A Guide to Observing Comet 45/P Honda–Mrkos–PajdušákováShare This:
All five bright planets are visible in the sky during this last week of 2015 and into the new year. Here’s a roundup of where to find them and what to look for, along with your best chance to easily spot Comet C/2013 US10 (Catalina) on the first morning of 2016 [Read more…] about Planet Roundup… and Comet Catalina UpdateShare This: