Beautiful Conjunction: Comet Garradd Meets M92

This lovely image of Comet Garradd (C/2009 PI) as it passes by the globular cluster M92 in the constellation Hercules, was taken remotely from the Tzek Maun Observatory in New Mexico by our friends Giovanni Sostero, Ernest Guido and Nick Howes. While the two objects look like they are right next to each other, M92 is over 25,000 light-years away while Comet Garradd is 12.5 light-minutes away from Earth! The comet looks almost like a bird or winged starship in flight with the dust tail and ion tail shooting off on either side. Comet Garradd is still on show in the northern hemisphere, although you’ll at least need binoculars to see it. The comet is around magnitude 7 now, and is heading north, so over the course of the next few weeks, it should become a little easier to see. For now, you need to get up early to see it, (around 5:30 to 6:30 am), but by the end of the month it should be visible all night long.

You can see another image of Garradd on today’s APOD (but personally I really like the one right here!)

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