Explore Scientific AR 102
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NASA attempted a challenging experiment when the "Deep Impact" spacecraft launched a projectile into the path of Comet 9P/Tempel 1. Scientists hoped that the July 4th collision would generate an explosive plume of material from the deep interior of the comet.
Comet Machholz (C/2004 Q2) is moving southward as it slides by the east side of Canes Venatici. Look for it less than 1° east of M94 on the 9th and Alpha Canes Venatici on the 15th. It has dimmed significantly since the January peak of 3rd magnitude and will probably be 11th or 12th magnitude during June, so use a telescope with a diameter of at least 4 inches.
On May Day, Comet Machholz (C/2004 Q2) is at the back of the bowl of the Big Dipper. It will travel to the southeast in May through Ursa Major and move into Canes Venatici. It faded from naked eye visibility in March. At 8th & 9th magnitude, it still presents a fine sight in binoculars and at low and medium power in your telescope. By July, a medium size telescope will be required to view it.