Morning Comets Continue to Dazzle in New Images, Timelapses

by Nancy Atkinson on November 1, 2013

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Comet Lovejoy on November 2, 2013, as seen from Singapore. Credit and copyright: Justin Ng.

Comet Lovejoy on November 2, 2013, as seen from Singapore. Credit and copyright: Justin Ng.

While many are anticipating seeing Comet ISON, there’s more in the sky these days than just one comet. There are actually four comets now in the skies in the mornings — in addition to ISON, there’s comets 2013 R1 Lovejoy, 2P/Encke and 2012 X1 LINEAR! Unfortunately, none of these are visible to the naked eye — yet anyway.

Here are some great recent images and video of these comet taken by amateur astrophotographers. Above is Comet Lovejoy, just taken by Justin Ng from Singapore . “Comet Lovejoy will share the same part of the sky as Comet ISON this month and it presents a cool astrophotography opportunity for skywatchers and astronomers,” Justin told Universe Today via email. “This image is a result of stacking 9 images together and each image was captured using a 3 inch telescope at 5 minutes exposure time for about an hour before dawn.”

See more below:

Comet 2P/Encke on October 30, 2013. The coma is partially obscuring the small barred spiral galaxy NGC 4371. Credit and copyright: Damian Peach.

Comet 2P/Encke on October 30, 2013. The coma is partially obscuring the small barred spiral galaxy NGC 4371. Credit and copyright: Damian Peach.

A gorgeous shot of Comet Encke by Damian Peach. “The fine narrow ion tail is very nicely defined which has recently developed,” Damian said via email.

Below is Damian’s image of Comet Lovejoy. “Looks as though a disconnection event may have occurred within Lovejoy’s gas tail,” Damian said. “Note the broad fan shaped condensation around half way along the tail.”

Comet 2013 R1 Lovejoy on Oct 31, 2013. Credit and copyright: Damian Peach.

Comet 2013 R1 Lovejoy on Oct 31, 2013. Credit and copyright: Damian Peach.

Here are two great timelapses of Comet ISON! The first is from Justin Ng from Singapore, taken on October 27:

Journey of Comet ISON on 27 October 2013 from Justin Ng Photo on Vimeo.

And this one is from Maik Thomas/NOVAlapse Timelapse Recordings:

Short Animation of Comet ISON – C/2012 S1 from NOVALAPSE Timelapse Recordings on Vimeo.

A recent look at ISON from Efrain Morales with black & white matched with a negative view:

Comet ISON C/2012 S1 On October 31st, 09:17-34 UTC. Coma much denser now around the nucleus and possibly both tails (Ion,Dust) on negative image (lower right) 17 x 1 minute exposures. Credit and copyright: Efrain Morales/Jaicoa Observatory

Comet ISON C/2012 S1 On October 31st, 09:17-34 UTC. Coma much denser now around the nucleus and possibly both tails (Ion, Dust) on negative image (lower right) 17 x 1 minute exposures. Credit and copyright: Efrain Morales/Jaicoa Observatory

A nice shot of Comet Lovejoy nearby in the sky to the bright binary star system Procyon in Canus Minor:

Procyon and Comet Lovejoy in the morning sky on October 31, 2013, from Arizona. Credit and copyright: Robert Sparks.

Procyon and Comet Lovejoy in the morning sky on October 31, 2013, from Arizona. Credit and copyright: Robert Sparks.

If you want to try and see these comets for yourself (good astronomy equipment needed) check out our article on how to see these four morning comets.

Want to get your astrophoto featured on Universe Today? Join our Flickr group or send us your images by email (this means you’re giving us permission to post them). Please explain what’s in the picture, when you took it, the equipment you used, etc.

About 

Nancy Atkinson is Universe Today's Senior Editor. She also works with Astronomy Cast, and is a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.

cschur November 1, 2013 at 11:04 PM

If your willing to get up early, their is quite a selection of cometary targets for the astro imager! Yesterday for the first time I was able to see ISON with a pair of 9 x 63 binoculars. Still around 9th magnitude, and very faint but brightening steadily.

Aqua4U November 3, 2013 at 9:04 AM

Well alrighty… got up this A.M. at 4 and went out to see Comet ISON. I was underimpressed with the view thru my 4″ S/C.. but there it was, number 47! Yes! Hoping it performs better soon!

Earlier I was scanning around in Leo as I woke up and came across TWO faint fuzzies in the field of view of my 32mm eyepiece. Say WHAT??? Looking again I realized I was looking at two of the Leo trio of galaxies! HA HA…. had me for a second there! WAKE UP! ~@; )

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