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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY!
      #6132186 - 10/11/13 10:56 PM

I was hoping all the Comet threads in these forums wouldn't again all turn into a astrophoto displays, so Ive created this thread of our 3 local comets for people to speak Visually about them, and about the gear they use, in addition to the sky darkness conditions used to observe our 3 comets visually.
Myself and all the astronomers I observe with are Visual astronomers, and we enjoy real time views of the night sky, not the astrophotoshop views so many display out here.
For those also interested in Visual astronomy also, of our 3 visitors, Id like to hear what people are using to observe our 3 comets with, and the gear they use for their visual observations.
Please keep the astro photophoto's to other threads.
Im personally am using my 7" 180mm refractor, as well as my larger 11 and 14" SCT's to hunt down and observe the 3 comets, but have been plagued by mediocre skies up to this point.
Myself, and I'm sure many others, are interested in Visual reports on what astronomers are observing, how the comets looks with specific gear used, for visual sightings and the sky conditions used to make these observations.
I am also interested in Binocular astronomers sightings, as I'm sure many are also, who are taking out moderate size to large size binoculars, to hunt down and observe our 3 comets at this point.
Does anyone care to share their visual reports, without using astrophotshop images of their comet sightings,
Sketches are always welcome, of course, since they are always much more realistic in reporting visual observations.

Again, please refrain from posting astro photos in this thread, to keep those of us interested in visual observations, interested in participating in this thread. This would also give inexperienced astronomers with new gear an opportunity to gauge what they should expect to see with the gear they have and the sky conditions they observe in.

This should bring out the real visual interest in us comet hunters.

Thanks in advance for anyone participating and sticking to the subject!!

....Ralph in Sacramento,


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Kevdog
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 07/11/12

Loc: Desert Hills, AZ
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6132420 - 10/12/13 02:57 AM

On October 4th I found Ison with my 18" Obsession in yellow zone skies. But it was just a slightly fuzzy "star" and I couldn't make out any tail.

We're hoping it puts on at least as good a show as PanStaars did, which I'm assuming it will as it brightens.

I didn't find Encke, but the hops were much harder than Ison, and it may have been another slightly fuzzy "star" that I overlooked.


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Ed D
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 04/30/10

Loc: Sunny South Florida
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Kevdog]
      #6132791 - 10/12/13 10:56 AM

Earlier this week the sky was crystal clear and absolutely perfect here in Miami, the legendary Florida sky. The light pollution to my East was also much lower than usual. I was using my 70mm f/12.9 achromat and decided to find ISON. WOW, was that one a challange! I finally found a very dim little star that appeared somewhat fuzzy and with a subdued but distinct teal color - ISON. The following morning I tried again to no avail. Tomorrow morning I will hopefully be observing ISON with my 6" f/8 planetary Dob, and I'll post my observations.

I'm also going to try for 2P/Encke. I have more time to observe Sunday morning than the 1/2hr during weekdays. I'll post on that one, too.

Unfortunately, Lovejoy is out of reach of my scopes (mag 12.84) even if I didn't have to deal with heavy LP.

Ed D


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MikeBOKC
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Reged: 05/10/10

Loc: Oklahoma City, OK
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6132794 - 10/12/13 10:57 AM

I enjoy seeing reports from both visual (like me) observers and AP mavens. Thanks for starting this thread. Hopefully the eyeball reports will start tumbling in as we move through October.

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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: MikeBOKC]
      #6133505 - 10/12/13 05:52 PM

Thanks for the reports so far. I think this is nice, being able to see realistic visual reports from astronomers using regular gear. I keep talking to a guy who doesn't have a clue where things are in the sky, but hes got an 18 megapixel camera on a small Chinese 80mm triplet and hes been just randomly taking a barrage of pictures of the sky in the general area where these comets are, then brings his results back home and tries to analyze every point on his photos for signs of these comets. I just think this is ridiculous, but everyone has their own way of doing things I guess.

Nevertheless, the moon sets at 12:30 tonight, so I'm going out to my new dark site and starting to set up at Midnight, and plan to be up till sunrise, giving it my best shot at at least comet ISON.

I'll report back what I find, I'm taking out my C11 with my 4" Orion refractor mounted on top of my scope tonight if the weather holds out, otherwise I'm probably gonna take out my 6" F/5 refractor. It should be pretty fun.

...Ralph


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6133779 - 10/12/13 08:16 PM

The Sky live is listing ISON at mag 10.18 today, and ENCKE at mag 8.6, those aren't too bad for smaller 6" scopes. I'm in the orange zone though.

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SporQ
member


Reged: 09/03/13

Loc: Indiana, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6133788 - 10/12/13 08:19 PM

I like the way you think, Ralph.

Good luck to you. I have been trying for ISON too and I will sound off when I find it.


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Mike C
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/05/08

Loc: Cornwall, UK
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: SporQ]
      #6133822 - 10/12/13 08:34 PM

This is certainly a thread I'll be keeping an eye on, as I look forward to tracking these comets! Good idea to keep it visual only, though I was guilty of some of the image posts previously.

Hope to post some observations before too long, once weather improves and the Moon wanes again.

Regards,


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kfiscus
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Reged: 07/09/12

Loc: Albert Lea, MN, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6133947 - 10/12/13 10:09 PM

Using the Z12 in my signature, my buddy and I found ISON on Oct. 2 and 8. It was easily found but a great disappointment. I described it as a 10th mag planetary nebula- compact, non-stellar, a very pale blue (so faint that I wondered if I was just being influenced by the photos we've all seen already.)
Oct. 8 we found Encke. It was very easily seen in my 24 Pan as a large diffuse glow with a brighter center. It faded to invisibility in my 13 because of its low surface brightness.


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kcolter
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Reged: 06/04/03

Loc: Missouri, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kfiscus]
      #6134559 - 10/13/13 09:27 AM

Saw Ison for the first time this morning in 20 inch Dob. It was very dim and took me longer than I expected to find. I had no luck with 11 inch Dob on three previous attempts. It is hard for me to imagine this comet making it to naked eye visibility.

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mattyfatz
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Loc: Boise Idaho
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kcolter]
      #6134576 - 10/13/13 09:37 AM

Quote:

Saw Ison for the first time this morning in 20 inch Dob. It was very dim and took me longer than I expected to find. I had no luck with 11 inch Dob on three previous attempts. It is hard for me to imagine this comet making it to naked eye visibility.



You never know.. Remember comet Holmes.. Mag 17 to 2.4 in less than 48 hours.. And that was on its way out!


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Dean Norris
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Reged: 11/05/08

Loc: Santa Cruz, Ca
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: mattyfatz]
      #6135749 - 10/13/13 08:09 PM

I observed Comet ISON this morning (10/13/12) through my 10" f/6 newt. The sky was dark and transparency was decent I was able to view NGC 2024 the Flame Nebulae with direct vision, right before finding the comet. The seeing was marginal leaning towards poor since Jupiter was showing some detail but very fuzzy. I found the comet using a 14mm 100* ep at 110x magnification. It was not easy to find. Around 5:15am local time ( 13:15 UT) after 20 minutes of looking I saw a dim object which for me resembled a flat amorphous galaxy. No nucleus or coma was seen on the comet. It was between 2 stars which I estimated at 10.5 and 10th magnitude. The comet was seen with direct vision but averted vision helped some. The comet was closer to the 10.5 star. I also observed it at 171x but the 110x view was best. I observed the comet for a half hour and stopped when I noticed the sky lightening.

Last week I tried to find it with no avail. So I'm assuming that it's brighten some in a week.

Good seeing and clear skies everyone. May this comet be one that we will long remember.

Dean


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kcolter
sage
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Reged: 06/04/03

Loc: Missouri, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: mattyfatz]
      #6136425 - 10/14/13 08:35 AM

You never know.. Remember comet Holmes.. Mag 17 to 2.4 in less than 48 hours.. And that was on its way out!




An excellent point! Thanks for the reminder.


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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kcolter]
      #6136733 - 10/14/13 11:39 AM

The following observations were made this morning between October 14.38 and 14.40UT .

2P/ENCKE Just visible with hand-held 15x70B, very faint, circular and diffuse, roughly 3'-4' in size under Bortle class 4-5 skies, but with more than a little humidity present, perhaps a trace of ground fog too. Would be very difficult without resorting to a telescope at most locations where much more than very modest light pollution prevails. Comet is now in its very rapid brightening phase and probably would have been an easy object in large binoculars in just a few more days if it were not for the full moon entering the immediate pre-dawn morning sky Oct. 15/16th.

C/ISON Disappointingly faint object, brightening very slowly. Shows somewhat more condensation than two weeks ago, but hasn't brightened by more than a few tenths. With a 16-inch at 114x: magnitude 11.1, coma diameter between 1' and 2'. Coma probably slightly elongated. Comet seems to be brightening at the rate anticipated for a simple reflecting body, more-or-less in the manner exhibited by C/Kohoutek, ONLY WORSE! Comet situated deep within the morning Zodiacal Light.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (10/14/13 11:49 AM)


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maugi88
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/25/13

Loc: SE MN
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6137580 - 10/14/13 06:00 PM

Can someone please describe how to find ISON

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Kevdog
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Reged: 07/11/12

Loc: Desert Hills, AZ
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: maugi88]
      #6137613 - 10/14/13 06:20 PM

Quote:

Can someone please describe how to find ISON




It's just at Leo's front "feet".

Heaven's Above ISON finder charts

Note that the time is GMT time.


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kfiscus
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Reged: 07/09/12

Loc: Albert Lea, MN, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: maugi88]
      #6137719 - 10/14/13 07:43 PM

The site Comet Chasing has EXCELLENT finder charts.

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maugi88
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/25/13

Loc: SE MN
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kfiscus]
      #6137765 - 10/14/13 08:08 PM

Ok great suggestions guys.

Ken comet chasing is really cool


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astrocy
super member


Reged: 11/28/09

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: maugi88]
      #6138863 - 10/15/13 11:47 AM

I was unable to find 2P/Encke in 15x70 binoculars early this morning despite knowing its exact position and observing under a clear and reasonably dark sky. Weather permitting I will try again tomorrow when the comet will appear next to the star 21 LMi and will hopefully be easier to find.

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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: astrocy]
      #6139051 - 10/15/13 01:19 PM

Skyhound usually has pretty good star charts on the current comets in the night sky. I generally use them as my starting point:

http://cometchasing.skyhound.com/

The sky live dot com also has some good information:

http://theskylive.com/comets

But my favorite one is using Calsky.com where we get the clear sky clocks.

To get to that link, first go here:

http://www.calsky.com/

then click on comets which will take you here:

http://www.calsky.com/cs.cgi/Comets?


On this particular page, just click on the link that says "starchart" next to any of the comets names, that will get you a detailed accurate chart of where the comet is. I like how you can click on the telrad box so you get a true scale on where the comets are relative to other objects.

Good luck!!

... Ralph


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6139053 - 10/15/13 01:25 PM

I managed to see both ISON and ENCKE last sat night using my C11. Both were very dim, but not so difficult to find, since Encke was just a few degs from Alpha Lynx, and ISON is beside Mars.

Both were found at about 100x using my 26 nagler, and both looked their best at about 140x using my 20 Nagler.. Not lots of details on either, but both very fun and exciting to finally locate.
I think during the next new moon, both should be visible in smaller scopes. At this point, compared to PannStarr and Lemon, both should be much more enjoyable to observe because we wont be racing to see these before the sun sets. Both, along with Lovejoy, should all make nice telescope late night comets very soon, instead of early morning comets.

....Ralph in Sac.


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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6139117 - 10/15/13 01:51 PM

Astrocy - the trick at this stage of the game is to look for something with the general appearance of a small M33. P/Encke shows essentially zero condensation with big binoculars at the moment, being just a totally diffuse mass of very low surface brightness. Next month it will progressively shrink in size, become significantly more condensed and decidedly brighter as it approaches the Sun.

BrooksObs


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astrocy
super member


Reged: 11/28/09

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6139960 - 10/15/13 10:42 PM

This morning I managed to see 2P/Encke in the same field as 21 LMi. It appeared quite faint, but it was just visible with direct vision in 15x70 binoculars. Averted vision helped and showed it as a small nebulous object with low surface brightness and no significant central condensation.

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Wes Stone
member


Reged: 05/20/03

Loc: Chiloquin, OR
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6140115 - 10/16/13 12:16 AM

I observed these three comets between moonset and twilight on the morning of October 15. It was 23 degrees F, but felt a lot colder. Limiting magnitude was 6.8-6.9 overhead, but there was a slight milky look lower on the horizon, and patches of river fog sometimes drifted by down at ISON's altitude. The zodiacal light was very bright just before the start of astronomical twilight.

I went for C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) first, as it was in a more transparent area of the sky. It was a quick and easy starhop from Delta Monocerotis, and obvious in my 10" Dob at all powers. Lovejoy seemed a bit less condensed (DC=3 with a very faint stellar nucleus) than it did 10 days ago. There was a parabolic inner coma about 1.5' across, brighter on the edges and spreading into a short, broad fan in PA~300. This was surrounded by a large, diffuse halo that was round and about 5' in diameter as seen through the 10" Dob. I estimated Lovejoy's magnitude at 10.0.

I also managed to see Lovejoy through 10x42 binoculars. It was just a very faint hazy spot perhaps 9' in diameter. With binoculars, I estimated the magnitude as 9.0.

Comet 2P/Encke has also changed since my last observation. It has gotten quite a bit brighter and a little more condensed. Encke was quite easy in 10x42 binoculars, appearing as a round little blob about 10' in diameter with soft edges and a slightly brighter center. I estimated its magnitude as 8.1.

In the 10" Dob at 47x, Encke showed a small central condensation near the western edge of a slightly lopsided coma. Several faint jets curved out to form a fan to the east, including a central spine about 7' long in PA~80. The longer I looked, the more prominent the jets appeared against the faint glow of the coma.

Once again, I saved C/2012 S1 (ISON) for last. After a starhop from Mars, I found the comet in a sparse telescopic star field. The comet was near the center of a misshapen pentagon of 10th-magnitude stars. ISON has grown and brightened in the past 10 days, and this morning I was able to see a stellar nucleus for the first time. At 47x, I estimated the coma diameter as 4' and the tail length as 10' centered in PA 290. Coma magnitude was 10.0. At 165x, the tail was brighter along the central spine and on its southern edge. I was not able to see ISON in binoculars.

I sketched all 3 comets (Encke very roughly), but I probably won't get them posted to my website for a week or so due to work and vacation.

--
Wes Stone
Chiloquin, OR
http://skytour.homestead.com


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Wes Stone]
      #6140266 - 10/16/13 04:04 AM

Chiloquin, OR is showing as been in the green zone, borderline in the black zone. What color zone are you in?
Im trying to gauge what size optics are able to see these comets based on color zones. This could be why some can see these objects in 70mm binoculars, and some can barely see them in 10" scopes.
23deg seems very cold to me. Ive observed in colder weather but have been ready for it. I caught myself during the last new moon freezing in weather only into the high 30's. Myself and one other I was observing with both were caught off guard by how the temperature fell drastically after maybe 2am.
Next time we will definitely bring our cold weather gear, including propane heaters.


...Ralph

Quote:

I observed these three comets between moonset and twilight on the morning of October 15. It was 23 degrees F, but felt a lot colder. Limiting magnitude was 6.8-6.9 overhead, but there was a slight milky look lower on the horizon, and patches of river fog sometimes drifted by down at ISON's altitude. The zodiacal light was very bright just before the start of astronomical twilight.

I went for C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) first, as it was in a more transparent area of the sky. It was a quick and easy starhop from Delta Monocerotis, and obvious in my 10" Dob at all powers. Lovejoy seemed a bit less condensed (DC=3 with a very faint stellar nucleus) than it did 10 days ago. There was a parabolic inner coma about 1.5' across, brighter on the edges and spreading into a short, broad fan in PA~300. This was surrounded by a large, diffuse halo that was round and about 5' in diameter as seen through the 10" Dob. I estimated Lovejoy's magnitude at 10.0.

I also managed to see Lovejoy through 10x42 binoculars. It was just a very faint hazy spot perhaps 9' in diameter. With binoculars, I estimated the magnitude as 9.0.

Comet 2P/Encke has also changed since my last observation. It has gotten quite a bit brighter and a little more condensed. Encke was quite easy in 10x42 binoculars, appearing as a round little blob about 10' in diameter with soft edges and a slightly brighter center. I estimated its magnitude as 8.1.

In the 10" Dob at 47x, Encke showed a small central condensation near the western edge of a slightly lopsided coma. Several faint jets curved out to form a fan to the east, including a central spine about 7' long in PA~80. The longer I looked, the more prominent the jets appeared against the faint glow of the coma.

Once again, I saved C/2012 S1 (ISON) for last. After a starhop from Mars, I found the comet in a sparse telescopic star field. The comet was near the center of a misshapen pentagon of 10th-magnitude stars. ISON has grown and brightened in the past 10 days, and this morning I was able to see a stellar nucleus for the first time. At 47x, I estimated the coma diameter as 4' and the tail length as 10' centered in PA 290. Coma magnitude was 10.0. At 165x, the tail was brighter along the central spine and on its southern edge. I was not able to see ISON in binoculars.

I sketched all 3 comets (Encke very roughly), but I probably won't get them posted to my website for a week or so due to work and vacation.

--
Wes Stone
Chiloquin, OR
http://skytour.homestead.com




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Roger Corbett
member


Reged: 03/07/13

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6140912 - 10/16/13 01:19 PM

This is a marvelous idea for a thread...

Thanks to the reports here, I can stay in bed in the mornings! Let me know when a small dob can see something under less than ideal skies!

-------------------------

OK, all kidding aside, the idea of ISON, Regulus, and Mars being so close together was tempting me--now, I'll know, to expect only Mars and Regulus from where I live! In the meantime, I'll enjoy simulated views of ISON going around the Sun in the Sky Safari app.


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Wes Stone
member


Reged: 05/20/03

Loc: Chiloquin, OR
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6141668 - 10/16/13 07:45 PM

Quote:

Chiloquin, OR is showing as been in the green zone, borderline in the black zone. What color zone are you in?
Im trying to gauge what size optics are able to see these comets based on color zones. This could be why some can see these objects in 70mm binoculars, and some can barely see them in 10" scopes.
23deg seems very cold to me. Ive observed in colder weather but have been ready for it.




Ralph,

I'd consider my yard to be in the lighter blue (Bortle 3)zone on the ClearDarkSky Light Pollution Map. Near the horizon, it is more like Bortle 4, but the high altitude and usually dry air make it pretty good overall.

I'm imagining trying to view ISON in early December when it is 0 degrees with two feet of snow on the ground. Not a given, but certainly possible here. Or it could just be cloudy for weeks on end.


Wes Stone
Chiloquin, OR
http://skytour.homestead.com


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Wes Stone]
      #6142250 - 10/17/13 03:28 AM

Using google earth and the light pollution map from Cal sky, I was able to accurately show what the Color zones were of all the sites I visit.
I don't know of any other way to accurately do this, since it does use Google maps and overlays the light pollution map on top of this.
Most people may already either know how to do this, or have their own method to accurately know what their sky conditions are like. I may post how to do this in a seperate thread.
Knowing this shows the value of dark skies. Many times I hear of people finding even the Horse head nebula with a 4" scope, and I know some people will think this is just nonsense, but I think dark sky conditions mean everything in making this happen.

I struggle in the orange zone (Bortal scale 5) I'm in, even with my C14, on objects that other people can see with a 6" scope and Ive been a deep space lover for the last 25 years.

.....Ralph

Quote:

Quote:

Chiloquin, OR is showing as been in the green zone, borderline in the black zone. What color zone are you in?
Im trying to gauge what size optics are able to see these comets based on color zones. This could be why some can see these objects in 70mm binoculars, and some can barely see them in 10" scopes.
23deg seems very cold to me. Ive observed in colder weather but have been ready for it.




Ralph,

I'd consider my yard to be in the lighter blue (Bortle 3)zone on the ClearDarkSky Light Pollution Map. Near the horizon, it is more like Bortle 4, but the high altitude and usually dry air make it pretty good overall.

I'm imagining trying to view ISON in early December when it is 0 degrees with two feet of snow on the ground. Not a given, but certainly possible here. Or it could just be cloudy for weeks on end.


Wes Stone
Chiloquin, OR
http://skytour.homestead.com




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petrus45
sage
*****

Reged: 01/31/11

Loc: SW Ohio / N Ky.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6150262 - 10/21/13 05:23 PM

Went out to look for ISON around 5 a.m. this morning. I found Regulus and Mars in the Eastern horizon, but no ISON. Supposedly C/ISON should be a degree or two from Mars in approximately the line from Regulus. Of course I'm in the city and with a full moon the opportunities are not so hot.

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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: petrus45]
      #6151447 - 10/22/13 10:46 AM

This full moon is killing me also, Despite the perfectly clear skies, there's just no way I can get out and do any more comet hunting until the next new moon, and the weekend afterwards also.

...Ralph


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6152857 - 10/23/13 01:48 AM

Since we are talking visual observations, we may have to bring up . Comet 2012-X1 LInear with just went into an outburst today.
One more visible one in the sky to hunt out now!!

....Ralph


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and75
member


Reged: 08/31/10

Loc: Hungary
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6153960 - 10/23/13 03:47 PM

Hi!
These three comet were my target this morning, the sky was all but perfect, and the Moon is getting closer and closer to them... But I saw Lovejoy easily, and Encke too, this was the first time I saw this comet. Meanwhile ISON was invisible.
I would be very happy if someone switched off the moon, but the bigger problem is that november is coming, the worst month, lots of fog and clouds here. So we have to try to find the comets, if its clear, I'll go out whether the Moon is there or not.


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janehoustonjones
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/21/07

Loc: 34 N 118 W, 652.0 feet
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: and75]
      #6155901 - 10/24/13 04:36 PM

I visually observed ISON October 6 from the California Colorado Desert, near Barstow, CA 25 miles out the Ft. Irwin Road, quite near the NASA Goldstone Deep Space Network facility. Private property, quite dark, 12.5 inch reflector. Here's my writeup and sketch :-)

My first view of Comet ISON

I won't be able to get to a dark sky again until Nov 2. I may carry my binoculars with me on a unplanned family visit to San Francisco area this weekend.

Edited by janehoustonjones (10/24/13 04:43 PM)


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BSJ
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 12/22/08

Loc: Grand Isle, VT
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: janehoustonjones]
      #6156881 - 10/25/13 07:19 AM

If only I had been into Astronomy when I spent three consecutive Junes at the National Training Center!

We spent most nights firing howitzers, but it sure was dark, way out in the middle of nowhere in tactical blackout conditions.


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TechPan6415
sage
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Reged: 07/29/12

Loc: Aspen, Co
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BSJ]
      #6158602 - 10/26/13 03:20 AM

My kind of thread, I am probably the only professional photographer who has *zero* interest in astro-fauxtography ( I took the image in my avatar because it had emotion and context, on film of course ).

A big thanks, I will check this daily and give a report when I can...


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: TechPan6415]
      #6159525 - 10/26/13 05:13 PM

Ive been using Stellarium to manuver my way around all these comets, now 4 of them out there within the range of our optics. Its such a valuable and powerful tool to have as an astronomer. Ive uploaded all the latest comet information to the software, and activated some of the tools used to locate and find objects better with it.
Most valuable to me is the angular separation feature, which shows how far something is to something else in degs and minutes.
It makes locating anything so much easier!!

...Ralph


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CosmicDave
member
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Reged: 11/13/08

Loc: Northern Plains of USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6159811 - 10/26/13 09:01 PM

Thanks for the tip Ralph. I just updated my Stellarium for ISON and Encke. Sure makes it easier.

Dave


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AlaskaIsCold
member


Reged: 11/16/11

Loc: San Diego, CA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: CosmicDave]
      #6159952 - 10/26/13 10:57 PM

How do you update stellarium for comets?

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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: AlaskaIsCold]
      #6160184 - 10/27/13 04:14 AM

Hi Christopher,

You might probably want to add several of the current comets in the sky to your solar system database in Stellarium. ISON will be one of them.
Before you start, make sure you have upgraded Stellarium to its latest version, which is version 0.12.4 and make sure your computer is online.

The comets you may want to add in your database are the following:

2P/Encke,
C/2012 S1 ISON
C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy)
C/2012 X1 (Linear) (this is the one that just had its outburst last week)

Also, I think C/2012 F6 Lemmon and C/2011 L4 PANSTARRS are already there after the 0.12.4 upgrade.

1. Open the "configuration" window on the left of Stellarium Screen or press F2.
2. Click on the "Plugins" tab at the top to the far right
3. Select "Solar System Editor" from the list on the left, forth item from the bottom.
4. Check the “load at start up box” at the bottom of the tab
5. Click the "Configure" button.
6. A window for "Solar System; objects" will open. Under the "Solar System tab" of the "Solar System objects" window, click the "Import orbital elements in MPC format" button at the bottom of the tab. An "import data" window will open.
7. Under the "lists" tab of the "Import data" window, Select the "type" as "comets";
8. Select the "source" as "download a list of objects from the internet"; under "or select from the list" click on "Select bookmark" and select "MPC's list of observable comets,"
9. Click the button at the bottom called "get orbital elements."
A list of objects found will load.
10. Scroll down and check the box next to each of the following comet names. Make sure they are these because there are many similar names:

2P/Encke,
C/2012 S1 ISON
C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy)
C/2012 X1 (Linear)

11. Click the "Add; objects". All of these comets will then be added to your solar system list. Close the Solar System editor and Configuration window.

12. Update your location and time. Basically, just open the location window, then close it, and open the time window, then close it.
13. To find your new comets, click on your search icon on the left of Stellarium's screen or press F3 to open the "Find object" window.
14. Click on the “list” tab, and then select Solar System from the pull down menu.
15. Scroll to your new comets, they will all be there now, and double click on the one you want and it will center itself on your Stellarium screen!!

Congratulations, you've just updated your Stellarium to the latest comets in the sky

Quote:

How do you update stellarium for comets?




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MrJones
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 09/15/10

Loc: Indiana
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6160514 - 10/27/13 10:53 AM

Thanks Ralph.

Also charts at freestarcharts.com and info at www.aerith.net/comet/weekly/current.html

Oct. 25th - 5am EST - 15x70 binoculars

C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) - Easy to find adjacent to Procyon or I might not have seen it. It required patient averted vision but eventually a slightly larger than stellar sized core surrounded by a bigger than expected declining diffuse gradient was discernible. I was hoping to confirm the oblong shape but can't say that it was obvious. I expect that as the moon sets earlier in a few days that this will be a nice target.

C/2012 S1 ISON - Not visible.


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Wes Stone
member


Reged: 05/20/03

Loc: Chiloquin, OR
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Wes Stone]
      #6160814 - 10/27/13 02:08 PM

Finally got my sketches from October 15 posted.

Quote:

I observed these three comets between moonset and twilight on the morning of October 15.

I went for C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) first, as it was in a more transparent area of the sky. It was a quick and easy starhop from Delta Monocerotis, and obvious in my 10" Dob at all powers. Lovejoy seemed a bit less condensed (DC=3 with a very faint stellar nucleus) than it did 10 days ago. There was a parabolic inner coma about 1.5' across, brighter on the edges and spreading into a short, broad fan in PA~300. This was surrounded by a large, diffuse halo that was round and about 5' in diameter as seen through the 10" Dob. I estimated Lovejoy's magnitude at 10.0.




Sketch of Lovejoy: http://skytour.homestead.com/files/C2013R1-131015.jpg

Quote:

Comet 2P/Encke ...
In the 10" Dob at 47x, Encke showed a small central condensation near the western edge of a slightly lopsided coma. Several faint jets curved out to form a fan to the east, including a central spine about 7' long in PA~80. The longer I looked, the more prominent the jets appeared against the faint glow of the coma.




Sketch of Encke: http://skytour.homestead.com/files/2P-131015.jpg

Quote:

C/2012 S1 (ISON) ... After a starhop from Mars, I found the comet in a sparse telescopic star field. The comet was near the center of a misshapen pentagon of 10th-magnitude stars. ISON has grown and brightened in the past 10 days, and this morning I was able to see a stellar nucleus for the first time. At 47x, I estimated the coma diameter as 4' and the tail length as 10' centered in PA 290. Coma magnitude was 10.0. At 165x, the tail was brighter along the central spine and on its southern edge.




Sketch of ISON: http://skytour.homestead.com/files/c2012s1-131015.jpg

--
Wes Stone
Chiloquin, OR
http://skytour.homestead.com




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kansas skies
sage


Reged: 12/02/12

Loc: Kansas, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Wes Stone]
      #6161199 - 10/27/13 06:11 PM

I managed to spot ISON visually with my C8 this morning from my semi-rural observing location. I wasn't sure what to expect, but both Stellarium and Cartes du Ciel showed it being in essentially the same location. I got started a few hours before dawn. Other than the last quarter moon, the sky conditions were fantastic. Still, it took close to an hour and a half of observation before I was able to spot an extremely faint, diffuse patch of light. After my initial observation, it was fairly easy to find again. I assume the reason it took so long to spot was due to my own dark adaption and the time required for the C8 to cool down. Also, the comet was in a better location for observation by the time I spotted it.

Bill


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Nick Anderson
super member


Reged: 04/21/13

Loc: Virginia, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kansas skies]
      #6161830 - 10/28/13 03:23 AM

I caught both Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) and Comet C/2012 X1 (LINEAR) for the first time two mornings ago (October 26) in my 8-inch Dob, albeit the moonlit skies. I used my local upper 5th magnitude site.

I first sighted Comet ISON when it was about 26 degrees above the horizon. It wasn't nearly as bright as I was expecting, probably due to the last quarter Moon. The comet was a difficult averted vision object (4/5) with a very diffuse appearance. The coma was probably only about 2 arcminutes in diameter. Doubling the power to 96x, with extreme averted vision I could just barely catch glimpses of a small tail relatively to the northwest.

As for Comet LINEAR, I first caught it when it was 12 degrees above the horizon and only 2 minutes before the start of astronomical twilight. However, it proved to be an easier target than Comet ISON. I estimated the coma to be 4-5 arcminutes in diameter, but with no tail. I found it to be a moderately difficult averted vision object (3/5).

I am hoping to try both of these comets again next week without the Moon and possibly from my rural site. It will also be worth giving Comet 2P/Encke and Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) each a first observation.

-Nick Anderson


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stevecoe
"Astronomical Tourist"
*****

Reged: 04/24/04

Loc: Arizona, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6162015 - 10/28/13 08:38 AM Attachment (57 downloads)

Comet ISON

28 Oct, 2013 Seeing and Transparency 6 out of 10
16" f/4.5 5:05 AM MST 100 miles from Phoenix, Az.
27mm eyepiece found by sweeping "underneath" Mars in Leo. Pretty low surface brightness.
14mm eyepiece (130X) pretty faint, pretty large, "comet-shaped" with fairly prominent nucleus. Coma and tail are low surface brightness, particularly with a 20% illuminated Moon only about 15 degrees distant. Averted vision shows the tail thicker and more prominent.

Clear skies;
Steve Coe

Drawing made at 130X with no filter.

Edited by stevecoe (10/28/13 08:39 AM)


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RolandosCY
super member


Reged: 01/02/09

Loc: Nicosia, Cyprus
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: MrJones]
      #6164290 - 10/29/13 10:22 AM

Hi everybody, any observations on these comets from LAST night? I plan to observe at 5am this morning, with my 6" achro refractor, under SQM 19.8 skies (with the comets over the sea and relatively low light pollution in their direction). I just wonder what my chances are!

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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6164878 - 10/29/13 04:12 PM

With the new moon coming this week, you may have a good chance to see them them all with your scope. Based on the other scopes you own, I'd say your eyes are experienced at detecting faint objects. I also have a similar scope, a Celestron Omni 150R, its definitely a nice comet hunter, though Ive only seen comet Linear, the newly outburst comet with a 4" refractor, but only after I had it in the eyepiece of my C11, and it was my piggy back scope.
They will all be faint and dim and small. Your 13 Ethos would be a nice one to start panning with, since it would give you enough magnification to help you detect any of them.
Sometimes, when I'm not sure if a scope I'm using can detect a comet, I look for an edge on galaxy of about the same brightness and see how that looks first, and see if i can detect anything. They are all I think just under Mag 10 now, any 6" scope should be able to see 10 mag objects, but then again, these aren't very obvious.
Id be interested in how you do. I'm planning on piggy backing my 150R on top of my C11 this weekend for my comet hunting. And I'm in the orange zone, so I should be in similar skies.
Good luck, report back what you find if anything at all.

....Ralph

Quote:

Hi everybody, any observations on these comets from LAST night? I plan to observe at 5am this morning, with my 6" achro refractor, under SQM 19.8 skies (with the comets over the sea and relatively low light pollution in their direction). I just wonder what my chances are!




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Dean Norris
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 11/05/08

Loc: Santa Cruz, Ca
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6165045 - 10/29/13 05:51 PM

I saw ISON Sunday morning around 5:15 am. The comet was found with a 100* 14mm ep. It was an easy direct vision object. Guessing the magnitude to be about 8.5. Best view was through a 9mm 100* ep giving 171x mag. With this ep the coma was visible with a halo surrounding the brighter coma. The comet appeared streak like with the coma showing an oval shape. The comet was much brighter than 2 weeks earlier when I first saw it.

Good Comet Hunting Everyone.

Dean

Edited by Dean Norris (10/31/13 02:54 PM)


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guangtou
sage


Reged: 03/27/10

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dean Norris]
      #6168100 - 10/31/13 10:04 AM

From Gila, NM (Bortle 2)Comet Lovejoy was quite easy in the Canon 15x50IS- couldn't really make out Ison.

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RolandosCY
super member


Reged: 01/02/09

Loc: Nicosia, Cyprus
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: guangtou]
      #6168391 - 10/31/13 12:28 PM

My first attempt on these comets was unsuccesful due to thin high cirrus clouds. It will be great for all who report if they add whether they are at a very dark, rural, suburban sky etc so that we get an idea of the visibility of the comets under all conditions...

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dgg99
member


Reged: 11/07/04

Loc: Northern Spain
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6168492 - 10/31/13 01:19 PM

I was able to see ISON and Lovejoy today with my 120mm, from a NELM ~5.3-5.5 site (zenith). ISON was a small and very faint smudge, with maybe a faint central condensation and a slightly elongated, asymmetric coma. It was quite small, maybe around 2'. A challenging comet! My best view was at 77x and 111x.

On the other hand, Lovejoy was a fine sight. It has a round coma that gradually fades away and a well visible central condensatiuon. I guess magnitude 7 and around 5' in diameter.

Regards


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janehoustonjones
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/21/07

Loc: 34 N 118 W, 652.0 feet
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: dgg99]
      #6172099 - 11/02/13 02:58 PM

I'm heading out to Amboy Crater http://cleardarksky.com/c/AmbyCtCAkey.html?1 Nice and dark, and good Clear Sky Chart conditions. Bringing 7x50 and 9x63 binos, 12.5 inch reflector and 70mm Televue Ranger. Hope to sketch the three comets, and compare ISON in the small refractor and medium reflector. Hubby has imaging gear & AP Refractor. We're covered!

Edited by janehoustonjones (11/02/13 02:59 PM)


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Jim T
member


Reged: 12/15/10

Loc: MO
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: janehoustonjones]
      #6172596 - 11/02/13 08:57 PM

I drove out to a green zone on Friday morning, armed just with my 10x50's and 25x100's (hand-held only). Within a minute, Lovejoy was found easily. Nice in the 10 byes, and very nice in the 25's.

I failed to find ISON or Encke. I think they might need more than 25x? Perhaps the hand-holding cost me there, due to their smaller size.

Lovejoy was greenish-gray at 25x. Transparency was about as good as it gets in MO in November, which was needed due to its' low position in the sky. Humid conditions bordering on the dew point, but a nice (cold) breeze to keep it barely at-bay.

Great thread! I hope to go out again later tonight, when the clouds clear off here.

Edited by Jim T (11/03/13 08:42 AM)


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Jim T
member


Reged: 12/15/10

Loc: MO
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Jim T]
      #6173345 - 11/03/13 09:26 AM

Drove out to another green zone this morning. C/2013 R1 Lovejoy was easy in 10x50's and 25x100's, and I drew the FOV in my 16" scope at 61x. Slightly green with a bright coma and a hint of tail.

I managed to find Comet ISON with quite a bit of difficulty. Dew was falling and would soon turn to frost, my maps ended Oct 31 ('extend the line'), and - perhaps most importantly - the Zodiacal Light. The "ZL" was brighter than the Milky Way, no doubt blending into the cometary light, brightening the sky background. I found Comet ISON 2 FOV's south of Sigma Leonis at 203x in my 16" (about one degree). I managed to then see it at 61x, but barely. Not seen in either of my binos.

I was not able to observe 2P/Encke, despite a good try.


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Mirzam
Post Laureate
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Reged: 04/01/08

Loc: Lovettsville, VA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Jim T]
      #6174926 - 11/04/13 06:52 AM

I think that ISON may have brightened considerably since your report. This morning it was easy to see with my 10" scope under mediocre sky conditions--est. mag about 8.0. Very encouraging!

JimC


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RolandosCY
super member


Reged: 01/02/09

Loc: Nicosia, Cyprus
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6175049 - 11/04/13 09:18 AM Attachment (16 downloads)

Well, finally I was able to get a shot for some cometary observations - though only barely, as a band of desert dust from the eastern shores of Mediterranean produced reduced transparencies below about 30 degrees altitude. Thankfully, C/2013R1 Lovejoy was able to penetrate the murkiness.

On Saturday night, I was able to observe Lovejoy through both my 18" but also through an 80mm APO from a good dark site (albeit with reduced contrast due to the desert sand). Obviously it did appear much brighter in the 18", at low magnification it appeared quite concentrated. at medium magnification it appeared much fuzzier, with a brighter concentration slightly offset from the center of the broad halo. In the 80mm refractor it appeared bright but rather small, it was stronly reminescent of how many NGC globulars in the Ophiuchus region appeared through my old 12"! The comet was readily visible direct vision as a fuzzy star in 10x50 binoculars and through 15x70 binoculars it again reminded me of distant unresolved globulars! Later in the same night, I managed to observe the comet with my 15x70 binos from a city of 250,000. It was quite faint, but still dtectable with direct vision!

On Sunday evening I set up to photograph the comet. From my home in the outskirts of a seaside city, again looking through airborne dust (and this time with high humidity), I managed to detect it with my 15x70s as an ilkl-defined faint roundish glow with no hint of a nucleus or tail. Through my 22x60 Takahashi binoculars it appeared as a roundish glow almost touching a 7.7 magnitude star. Again, no hint of central structure was visible. Through my Takahashi FS102 at 41X though it appeared to have a bright nucleus well offset from the center of the coma. On checking later the photos I took it seems that at the time the comet was passing very close to a 12-th magnitude star, hence the appearance of a bright nucleus!

The other comets were not attempted as transparency was detoriating at the time...

Edited by RolandosCY (11/04/13 09:21 AM)


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RolandosCY
super member


Reged: 01/02/09

Loc: Nicosia, Cyprus
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6175055 - 11/04/13 09:24 AM Attachment (19 downloads)

Quote:

Obviously it did appear much brighter in the 18", at low magnification it appeared quite concentrated. at medium magnification it appeared much fuzzier, with a brighter concentration slightly offset from the center of the broad halo.



Here is my drawing of Lovejoy through my 18"....


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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6175173 - 11/04/13 10:34 AM

This morning (November 4.4UT) I observed both C/ISON and 2P/Encke.

C/ISON appeared as a rather odd but fairly impressive object of total magnitude 9.1 showing a moderate degree of condenation within its coma using a 41cmL, 70x, and sporting a very distinct, if faint, long tail of seemingly almost even surface brightness over most of its length (an unusual situation in my experience). Shortly thereafter 15x70B also showed the comet, this time as magnitude 8.8 and around 5.5' in diameter, but no tail. My site had Bortle class 4 skies with a limiting magnitude approaching 6.0 this morning.

2P/Encke was less easily visible with just the binoculars, much lower in the sky (only 13 degrees up) and in the brightest portion of the ZL. I made it to be magnitude 7.6 and perhaps 3' in diameter, but it could not be considered a particularly obvious object with the binoculars.

BrooksObs


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Mike C
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/05/08

Loc: Cornwall, UK
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6175749 - 11/04/13 03:41 PM

Finally got to see C/2013 R1 Lovejoy on Sunday morning, after a long run of cloudy nights. Even so, I had to keep taking the telescope inside and covering the mount during the frequent showers. There were even several flashes of lightning towards the south as I viewed the comet. Sky transparency between the clouds was excellent, though, and I'm in a yellow/green boundary area light-pollution-wise.

I was pleased, though not surprised having read the other observations, to find the comet easily visible in a 9 x 60mm finder. In the 8" SCT the coma was bright, diffuse, rather than strongly concentrated around the pseudo-nucleus, and with a couple of faint stars visible through it. Indications of a short tail were obvious from the shape of the coma.

I did attempt some imaging, but was quickly driven indoors by a torrential shower. I had hoped to view ISON, Encke and Linear 2012 X1, and had checked their locations for that morning. However, after some sleep I looked out at 5:30am to find the comets' locations only just clearing my rather high eastern horizon (I live in a valley), the sky starting to lighten AND more cloud moving in . Another day perhaps!

Thanks for reading. Regards,


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Dean Norris
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 11/05/08

Loc: Santa Cruz, Ca
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6175907 - 11/04/13 05:09 PM

Saw Comet ISON Sunday morning 11/3/13 at 4:30 am PST. Even though the Moon was absent the comets' magnitude hadn't changed much if at all since a week earlier. It did appear a little bigger in the coma region.

Sky conditions were decent the Flame nebulae easily seen in my 10" newt.
The seeing was fair with Jupiter showing some detail with moments of steady views.

Dean



Edited by Dean Norris (11/04/13 05:11 PM)


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dean Norris]
      #6176697 - 11/05/13 01:26 AM

I managed to see all 4 comets on Friday night. being out by myself from late Friday evening to Saturday morning. I had a perfect flat view to the East from the Orange zone just east of Sacramento in Rancho Cordova, and one by one, started observing our 4 comets as they all came over the eastern horizon. C/2013R1 Lovejoy was the first one to see, it was up just after 11pm and an easy one to spot, exactly halfway between Procyon and M44. It was fairly easy to find in 15x70mm binoculars, also easy to see in a 4" F/6 Orion Astroview refractor at ~40x, and very detailed in my C11 at about 130x.

ISON was much more difficult to detect, I could not see it in my 15x70 binoculars until it was spotted in my C11 first, then my 4" refractor. It was very dim and oblong in shaped and once it got high enough in the sky, it finally began to take on the classic wispy shape comets are known for. It was 8 degrees below Mars and just 40 arc minutes from 77 Leo, a 4th magnitude naked eye visible star in the sky. it also looked best at about 130x in my C11, and was just barely noticible in my 4" refractor. It became detectable after 3am.

2P/ Encke, came up just before 5am, and looked like a tight Globular cluster in my binoculars and 4" scope, but was relatively bright in my C11. It seemed to take magnification well, and was its best at about 165 degrees in my C11. 2P/ Encke was 15 degrees below Denebola, which was 15 degrees from Mars but also, relatively easy to spot in my 15x70 binoculars.

Comet C/2012 X1 Linear. our recently outburst comet, was exactly 20 degrees to the left of Comet 2p/Encke, This was the largest of the group of comets to detect, even just 5 degrees off the horizon. In my 15x70's, the comet resembled M13. The 4" refractor also was easy to observe the comet with, and with my C11, was it looked like a big poof of round light. This comet was visible just after 5:30am, still dark enough, but definitely getting brighter.

Overall, a pretty nice accomplishment for one night of comet hunting and only about 19 miles from my home in Sacramento.

For the record, the seeing and transparency were nearly perfect, 4/5, which is pretty nice for this time of the year, and one of the rare times left before the end of the new year.

Overall, a pretty awesome night to see all 4 comets in one night.

...Ralph A


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Bill Barlow
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6177262 - 11/05/13 12:07 PM

Very good job, Ralph. It doesn't get much better than that for comet hunting/viewing. Seems we only get to see maybe one comet every year or two, but four at once is almost unheard of. I have visually observed several comets over the last 5-6 years or so, but haven't got up early enough yet to try and find these.

Bill

Bill


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aa6ww
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Reged: 10/23/11

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Bill Barlow]
      #6177693 - 11/05/13 04:04 PM

Thanks Bill, It actually took quite a bit of planning to accomplish this. Even the site I went to, I found on Google earth because I wanted to find a completely flat area to the East. I sent in a long detailed description of the efforts it took to plan for this even, along with my findings, in an article to cloudy nights, but they have yet to release it. I don't know what the delay is, maybe it wont get accepted. Either way, I wanted to report my findings here, because it actually took me a month of planning to accomplish this.
I think observing 4 comets in one night, especially these incoming ones, were quite an accomplishment.

Thanks again!

....Ralph


Quote:

Very good job, Ralph. It doesn't get much better than that for comet hunting/viewing. Seems we only get to see maybe one comet every year or two, but four at once is almost unheard of. I have visually observed several comets over the last 5-6 years or so, but haven't got up early enough yet to try and find these.

Bill

Bill




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Glen A W
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6177965 - 11/05/13 06:34 PM

I observed all three of these comets on the morning of Monday, November 4. ISON was really quite faint. I had clouds the past two weeks and it looked little improved, except for the elongation becoming a slightly more obvious tail. The mag estimates I have see of 8-9 mag seem very generous. It was easy to find because it was near a little curve of 6-8 mag stars below Mars.

Encke was very easy to find, being almost on top of a star of about mag 3-4. It was not too well defined but easy to see. I'd put it around mag 7-8. I had never seen Encke before, despite being at this since the 80s.

Lovejoy was a surprise. It was easy to see, mag 6-7. Green/blue color was apparent. I was so surprised, when I first saw it, at how well defined it was.

I hopped to the comets using charts previously prepared with MegaStar. I use a 50mm finder and put it right on the comets' position. Very fast for me.

I was using a 4"/900 SkyWatcher ED with a cheap 38mm eyepiece. Skies here are 6.5 overhead, but not so hot down low. I did see Lovejoy in 80mm binoculars as well. 35 binoculars did not show it. I could not get Linear. It was just too low and then morning twilight began. Glen


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Glen A W
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Bill Barlow]
      #6177970 - 11/05/13 06:37 PM

Quote:

Very good job, Ralph. It doesn't get much better than that for comet hunting/viewing. Seems we only get to see maybe one comet every year or two, but four at once is almost unheard of. I have visually observed several comets over the last 5-6 years or so, but haven't got up early enough yet to try and find these.

Bill

Bill




I believe the most I have heard of, reliably reported, was around 15 or so in one night, by well-known observer Seiichi Yoshida. GW


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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Glen A W]
      #6179076 - 11/06/13 11:50 AM

I've gone out to dark sites before and seen half a dozen or more comets at one time, on a night where me and my friends are just in the mood to hunt down comets in the sky, some as dim as mag 14, but they were not incoming or anything worth mentioning. I don't think this is uncommon at all.
Seeing four incoming "Rock Stars" is a completely different issue though. Before its all said and done, these should all be visible in small binoculars very shorty, which in itself is pretty cool!
Comets are just fun to track down and observe. They are so unpredictable.

...Ralph

Quote:

Quote:

Very good job, Ralph. It doesn't get much better than that for comet hunting/viewing. Seems we only get to see maybe one comet every year or two, but four at once is almost unheard of. I have visually observed several comets over the last 5-6 years or so, but haven't got up early enough yet to try and find these.

Bill

Bill




I believe the most I have heard of, reliably reported, was around 15 or so in one night, by well-known observer Seiichi Yoshida. GW




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BrooksObs
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6179113 - 11/06/13 12:10 PM

Indeed, seeing many (8, 10, even 12) comets in a single night is no longer that unusual, like it was back in the 60's and 70's. Far more faint examples are discovered and remain visible over prolonged periods. Most are of very little consequence, remaining vague bare smudges, in even large amateur instruments.

The truly extraordinary rarity is to see more than one comet with the unaided eye in the sky at the same time. The grandest example of this likely was way back in October 1911. Around mid month observers saw yellowish 1st magnitude Comet Beljawsky, together with greenish-blue 2nd magnitude Comet Brooks (both with beautiful tails), along with 5th magnitude Comet Quenisset between and above them, in the western evening sky!

BrooksObs


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Nick Anderson
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6180377 - 11/07/13 05:34 AM

I caught all four comets in my 8-inch Dob (three in just 10x50 binoculars) on November 3 from a 6.2-6.3 magnitude site in North Carolina before the partial solar eclipse at sunrise. These are my first observations of C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) and 2P/Encke, as well as my first without the Moon for C/2012 S1 (ISON) and C/2012 X1 (LINEAR). Below are my logs, all times in EST (the switch happened earlier that morning). Seeing and transparency were both good.

ISON continues to be a dud, but its tail makes it a small bit redeemable. In contrast to my observations 8 days prior, ISON was easier to catch than LINEAR, but this may be merely a side effect of astronomical twilight (I caught LINEAR 2 minutes before it started last time). I did not attempt LINEAR in binoculars.


Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy): first spotted at 4:14 am; currently located in southwestern Cancer; neat binocular comet; appears in binoculars as an easy averted vision object as a small round glow; in the telescope it is an easy averted vision object (just below the threshold of direct vision) with a stellar nucleus, which is moderately brighter than the surrounding coma; the diffuse coma is around 2-4 arcminutes in diameter and possibly slightly extended to the WNW; best in binoculars or at 48x; also viewed at 96x

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON): first sighted in telescope at 4:38 am when it was about 26 degrees above the horizon; has drifted further west in Leo toward the Virgo border; moderately difficult averted vision object in binoculars, and just a faint smudge; moderately easy averted vision object in telescope; coma is no more than 2 arcminutes in diameter, surrounding a slightly brighter stellar nucleus; a tail is seen with concentration and stretches to the WNW about 15 arcminutes; viewed at 48x and 96x

Comet 2P/Encke: first sighted in telescope at 4:52 am when it was about 13 degrees above the horizon; currently located in Virgo; moderately easy averted vision object in binoculars and almost stellar; easy averted vision object in telescope; coma is 1-2 arcminutes in diameter; no tail visible; viewed at 48x and 96x

[Astronomical twilight began at 5:02 am]

Comet C/2012 X1 (LINEAR): first spotted at 5:15 am when it was about 18 degrees above the horizon; has drifted across the border of Coma Berenices into Boötes; moderately difficult averted vision object; 3-5 arcminutes in size; very diffuse; severely impacted by twilight minutes after initial observation; viewed at 48x and 96x


-Nick Anderson


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Aquarellia
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6180918 - 11/07/13 12:17 PM Attachment (37 downloads)

What a good post, I appreciate this !
Here a double sketch with the comets, Lovejoy and ISON. Both made this morning of November 7th, 3:30 to 4:30 UT.
The sketch on the left shows the easy comet C/2013 R1 - Lovejoy, close to M44.
The sketch on the right, shows the comet C/2012 S1 - ISON, the brightest star is Zavijah, beta Virgo. The ISON’s tail is quite difficult to detect.
After an episode of strong wind, the sky was particularly pure above our provencal ground. The material used is a 102/1000 refractor with a magnification of 25x to 40x. The drawings are made with pencil and inverted while scanning. I don’t succeed to observe 2P Encke nor 2012X1 LINEAR.
Clear sky to you all !

Edited by Aquarellia (11/07/13 12:18 PM)


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6182369 - 11/08/13 07:28 AM

I went out about 3:30 AM local time today and observed Comet Lovejoy with both 10x50 and 15x70 binocs from my suburban location (skies Mag 4.5). Very easily seen with direct vision. The other comets were too low in the sky and not visible from my location at that time.

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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6182435 - 11/08/13 08:31 AM

Got my first visual observation, this morning 11/8, of C/2013 R1 Lovejoy with my 10" refl. What was surprising was that despite observing from a white zone I was able to see Lovejoy in my scopes 10x50 finder and my 12x63 binoculars as a small, faint patch of light.

Rich (RLTYS)


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dan777
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #6183322 - 11/08/13 05:20 PM

This morning was my first attempt at these four comets. I observed from the border of a red/orange zone. Looking east I was looking into the light dome from the city (red zone). Additionally, there were some industries with bright lights due east. Scope is 8” Dob, transparency was 3/5, seeing was 2/5, astronomical twilight started at 5:44 am EDT.

C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) - Easy to spot high (54°) in the SE sky at 4:02 am. Nice coma (8’) and core, but no tail. Viewed at 85x and 120x. Only 3½° from the Beehive cluster. Off to a good start!

C/2012 S1 (ISON) - No trace until it reached 24° at 5:33 am and then it was a very faint smudge using averted vision. It never improved. Viewed at 50x and 85x.

C/2012 X1 (Linear) - Worked on this intermittently from about 5:00 until 6:30. No luck.

2P/Encke – Same as Linear. No luck.

I would award comet of the century to PanSTAARS before I give it to ISON


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stargazer424
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: dan777]
      #6184048 - 11/09/13 03:39 AM

Just saw what I am 99% sure was Comet Lovejoy! Put the telescope in the car and went to bed at around 10pm @EST, set an alarm for 1am, headed out to a little league field nearby, aligned my finderscope and telrad (first time using!) to Polaris and aimed at Cancer. When I failed to find M44 or the comet I used my custom degree circles, Wixey level and Skyeye app to find M44. There was the cluster centered perfectly! Used the telrad and a chart I printed with degree circles to get the approximate spot. Move the scope around a little and there it was! A blurry spot!

I was pretty sure that was it, but then looking at the sketches everyoneposted, I am sure it is! Thats Comet #2 for me and my first telescope (Panstarrs being first)

I also looked at Jupiter, the Pleiades, M43 (Orion nebula), M1 (Crab nebula) and a few stars. Betelgeuse is brilliant!

Then I had a whats that moment while looking around...aimed my telrad at it and saw a nice cluster. Just tried to look it up and couldn't find it. It looked like an open cluster between Leo and Cancer, it was higher in the sky than Leo's head. Maybe it wasn't a cluster, but just grouping of stars...any thoughts?


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brianb11213
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: stargazer424]
      #6184056 - 11/09/13 03:54 AM

Nice observations!

Quote:

Then I had a whats that moment while looking around...aimed my telrad at it and saw a nice cluster. Just tried to look it up and couldn't find it. It looked like an open cluster between Leo and Cancer, it was higher in the sky than Leo's head. Maybe it wasn't a cluster, but just grouping of stars...any thoughts?



M67?


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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: dan777]
      #6184060 - 11/09/13 04:06 AM

Hi Dan,

I like your quote on PannStarr being more of a comet of the century vs comet ISON, which somehow, someone decided was going to be the comet to fantasize about. But don't forget comet Holmes. Now that was impressive for this century, so far!!

...Ralph

Quote:

This morning was my first attempt at these four comets. I observed from the border of a red/orange zone. Looking east I was looking into the light dome from the city (red zone). Additionally, there were some industries with bright lights due east. Scope is 8” Dob, transparency was 3/5, seeing was 2/5, astronomical twilight started at 5:44 am EDT.

C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) - Easy to spot high (54°) in the SE sky at 4:02 am. Nice coma (8’) and core, but no tail. Viewed at 85x and 120x. Only 3½° from the Beehive cluster. Off to a good start!

C/2012 S1 (ISON) - No trace until it reached 24° at 5:33 am and then it was a very faint smudge using averted vision. It never improved. Viewed at 50x and 85x.

C/2012 X1 (Linear) - Worked on this intermittently from about 5:00 until 6:30. No luck.

2P/Encke – Same as Linear. No luck.

I would award comet of the century to PanSTAARS before I give it to ISON




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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6184085 - 11/09/13 05:05 AM

Has anyone had a chance to use a Lumicon Swan filter on any of these comets including comet Linear yet? I keep forgetting to try mine out. I'll be going out tomorrow night for an all nighter with my C14 to try my 2" Swan filter.

...Ralph


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6184203 - 11/09/13 08:33 AM

Observed Lovejoy with my 15x70 binocs this morning at 5:50 AM local time. To me the comet looks clearly brighter than nearby M67, maybe a half magnitude brighter?.

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ilovecomets
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6184446 - 11/09/13 11:00 AM

Observed Lovejoy and ISON from a yellow zone this morning. Lovejoy was barely naked eye visible. Looked great in 4 and 20" scopes. Distinctive green but no tail visible. Just a coma. ISON on the other hand was difficult to see, even with the 20" scope. However there was a faint 2-3 degree dust tail that made up for the dimness. Hoping ISON brightens as it gets closer to perihelion.

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Nick Anderson
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6184899 - 11/09/13 03:17 PM Attachment (18 downloads)

I drove out to my usual 6.3-6.4 magnitude site for another view of the four comets in my 8-inch Dob and 10x50 binoculars. Seeing and transparency were both excellent, and temperatures were in the mid-20's with no winds. The zodiacal light was faintly visible in the east.

Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) revealed a definite broad tail this morning, seen with difficulty stretching about 25 arcminutes to the west. It is fainter than ISON's tail, and I'd suspect that any significant light pollution would render it completely invisible. I estimated the coma at 8-10 arcminutes in size. The comet is now direct vision at the eyepiece. Reports are coming in that this comet may be visible to the unaided eye, but I regrettably did not attempt this.

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) looks much the same as before, but with perhaps a slightly longer tail. I estimated it at 15-20 arcminutes. The coma remains the same in size.

The mountains blocked my view of the other two comets longer than I had hoped, but I still managed to catch both of them. I even managed to see Comet C/2012 X1 (LINEAR) in 10x50 binoculars as a difficult averted vision object (4/5). Its coma is very diffuse, so I opted not to sketch the comet (as planned) due to the start of astronomical twilight.

My sketch of Comet 2P/Encke is attached.

-Nick Anderson


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MessiToM
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6185869 - 11/10/13 02:38 AM

I just came in from viewing lovejoy. Wow what a nice big coma! Perhaps it was me but I thought I could "just" make out the tiniest bit of tail. I didnt notice any color but it definetly "jumped rite out" at me. I observed it for almost 2 hours off and on between clouds.

I went out early due to the forecast. The comet was roughly 30* in alt. I first found it in my 40mm binos and when it wasnt to murky I could star hop my 17.5" over.

This was quite the treat.


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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #6186051 - 11/10/13 07:56 AM Attachment (10 downloads)

Here's a sketch of comet Lovejoy from my observations on the 8th.

Rich (RLTYS)


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Nick Anderson
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6186252 - 11/10/13 10:27 AM

Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) is naked eye!! I caught it this morning from my local orange zone site. After waiting a few minutes for my eyes to adapt to the darkness, and it was visible with difficulty as a small non-stellar haze.

That makes two this year so far. Will ISON be next...?

-Nick Anderson


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Mike C
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6186507 - 11/10/13 12:35 PM

Very frustrating weather for astronomy here at the moment - brief, tantalisingly clear spells, punctuated by heavy rain showers as soon as you start to set up a 'scope! The sky only then clears once you pack the 'scope away. Consequently, I still have not yet seen ISON, Encke and LINEAR C/2012 X1.

With a forecast of merely 40% cloudy skies this morning I got up at 4:30am with the hope of finally seeing these three. It was cloudy at first, but when I looked out at 5:30am it appeared clear. This is it, I thought! However, on setting up the C8, and once I was more dark-adapted, I realised there was a layer of high cloud. I searched for each comet, but was thwarted by that cloud layer and the thicker cloud that moved in after a few minutes. Not sure I'll have another chance, but I still hope to report some observations!

Regards,


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Hans Wever
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Reged: 11/10/13

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6186762 - 11/10/13 02:46 PM

Hi Ralph,

Yesterday morning I managed to see Ison with a WO 66sd refractor. The weather wasn't that good: strong wind en clouds flying by. Still Ison was rather easy to find and already visible at 15x. Best view was at 70 times. There was a fuzzy core and mainly by adverted viewing, a short tail of about 1/5 of a degree. Magnitude routhly about 8.
Observing location was rather dark with only some villages in the neiberhood in the south of Limburg, The Netherlands, Europe.
Coming home location exactly matched Stellarium. Easy to find by two double stars in the neiberhood.
I ges seeing it with your 7" refractor should by no problem.

Hope this is helpfull.

Good comet hunting!

Hans Wever


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RolandosCY
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Reged: 01/02/09

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6186850 - 11/10/13 03:28 PM Attachment (25 downloads)

Another observation of lovejoy, from a (normally) very dark site at Lysos, Cyprus. The deser dust that has been affecting us for more than a wekk did scatter light a bit creating brighter than average conditions, but once above the horizon murk, Lovejoy was enjoyable to watch. It was readily visible as a bright, circular haze of almost constant brigthness in 10x50 binos. In 15x70 binos it reminded more of a globular cluster with a brighter nucleus. With my 6" achro at 69x it appeared almost circular with undefined edges, to my eyes it seemed to be a bit fuzzier to the north. There was a distinct small nucleus. Finally, by 2am I could detect it naked eye, as adirect vision haziness that appeared to grow with averted vision - ssort of a fainter version of what I saw in 10x50 binos...

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stevecoe
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6186946 - 11/10/13 04:01 PM

Howdy;

Comet Lovejoy was naked eye this morning, right at the limit of my vision after I got dark adapted. So, it was easy in my 8X42 binoculars. I appeared little elongated and was within a nice field of view with a wide double star. I did not try for any of the other comets because of a low haze near the horizon.

Clear skies;
Steve Coe


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: stevecoe]
      #6187123 - 11/10/13 05:11 PM

Much to my surprise, the sky cleared and I was able to see Comet Lovejoy through a 10x50 Celestron Ultima binocular from my red zone backyard early this morning.

C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) was located a bit northeast of M44 and appeared as a more-or-less circular patch of nebulosity. This comet is currently putting Comet ISON to shame. It has been seen naked-eye from dark sites.

I also observed M35, M36, M37, M41, M42 and the Sword of Orion, M44, Collinder 70, and the Hyades before the clouds returned.

Browse http://freestarcharts.com/index.php/19-news-and-current-events/218-comet-love... and http://cometchasing.skyhound.com/comets/2013_R1.pdf for finder charts.

For more on the comet, consult the following sites:

https://www.heavens-above.com/comet.aspx?cid=C%2F2013%20R1&lat=0&lng=...

http://spaceweathergallery.com/indiv_upload.php?upload_id=89424&PHPSESSID... (image)

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/highlights/The-Other-Great-Morning-C...

http://scully.cfa.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/returnprepeph.cgi?d=c&o=CK13R010 (ephemeris)

http://cometchasing.skyhound.com/

http://theskylive.com/lovejoy-tracker

Dave Mitsky


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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6187569 - 11/10/13 09:21 PM

I went out again last night till morning, and had a chance to see all 4 comets again. Me and a few friends just kinda goofed around till after 11pm when the half moon finally went down, then one by one I found all 4 comets again.

Lovejoy had definably gotten brighter since last week. It became easily visible in binoculars but in my C11, was an impressive site. Its right on the cusp of naked eye visibility locally in the Sacramento Skies if seeing a spot in the skies impresses anyone with out optics.

The big surprise to me was comet ISON. Last weekend it was just a little wisp of a comet but this week, it had a nice bright coma and tail and with my Lumicon Swan band filter, the tail fanned out as far as I could see. Easily taking up the entire field of view in my 41 Panoptic in my C11. Very Impressive looking and very classic comet looking with the bright coma and long thin wispy tail, finally!!.

Encke was also brighter, showing up nicely between Arcturus and Spica, about 7 degs from Spica.

Comet Linear, the recently disintegrated comet, has become almost completely transparent. I couldn't even see it in my C11 because its light had spread out so much, but in my 4 refractor at about 2.2 deg field of view, it was showing up as a very very dim patch of light just 4 degs above Arcturus. I think Linear is now done now, and will no longer be visible without wide field astrophotography.

One of the coolest things about our comet hunting last night, or rather, this morning, is when we we were all packed up, at 6am, and the morning was just coming up, we looked up and saw a long 6 minute fly over of the international space station directly overhead. It went from below Jupiter, almost directly overhead, and ended about 6 minutes later in the north. It was as bright as Jupiter, and already the sunlight was up, but it was still brilliant. It was as if we got the thumbs up from the Space Station saying "Nice Job guys!"

What a difference a week makes!!

...Ralph


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Aquarellia
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6187995 - 11/11/13 04:33 AM Attachment (33 downloads)

I agree with the observers here before, Lovejoy is now a naked eye comet. Under a very good sky in Provence I had the opportunity to sketch 3 comets through a good binocular, here the result. I don't succeed with Encke. We just had a small problem with the "zodiacal light pollution" to look through, for ISON and mainly LINEAR.

Edited by Aquarellia (11/11/13 04:35 AM)


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6189040 - 11/11/13 05:02 PM

The sky was far more transparent this morning. The winds were calm and the temperature was 39 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius).

This time I used 10x50 Celestron Ultima and 15x70 Burgess Optical binoculars to observe Comet Lovejoy, Jupiter, and a number of deep-sky objects.

Comet Lovejoy had progressed on its northeastward corse and was near the fourth-magnitude star Kappa Leonis. It was easily visible through the 15x70s. The 15x70s were a bit difficult to hold with one hand but I managed.

DSOs observed included M35, M36, M37, M38, M41, M42 and the Sword of Orion, M44, M45, M46, M47, M67, NGC 2244, NGC 2264, Collinder 65, Collinder 69, Collinder 70, and the Hyades. M46 was the most difficult object to see from my light-polluted backyard.

Dave Mitsky


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andrew hampton
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6190025 - 11/12/13 06:00 AM

Had some nice views of Lovejoy on 8th and 9 Nov. in 10x50. A lovely sight with the beehive cluster in the same field. Overshadowed by all the Ison publicity, it's proving to be a fine comet to follow over the winter months.

andrew


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Kevdog
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: andrew hampton]
      #6190283 - 11/12/13 10:08 AM

I got out with the Oberwerk 15x70s last night. As soon as I picked the correct starting star and followed the path, there it was. Easy even from my Orange Skies, though no tail was visible.

Just wish I'd remembered when I was out at 3am with the C11 camping last weekend! I was too tired to wait up for ISON, but LoveJoy was already up and I could have seen it!

May have to drag out the 18 tonight and see if I can catch any of the tail.


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Edward E
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Kevdog]
      #6190443 - 11/12/13 11:22 AM

Observing from a red zone here in Tucson, AZ this morning from 04:15 to 04:55. I was able to see Comet Lovejoy easily in the 9X50 finder. I put its mag at 4 or 4.5. Should be an easy eyeball object under darker skies. In my 6" f8 Achro Refactor using a 25mm Ortho eyepiece (49X with 1deg FOV) the comet was bright with a star like center and a very distinct multi-layered coma that faded off gradually away from the center. The coma was elongated toward the West. I did not see a tail but the weather and lighting conditions may have affected that detail. There were a number of stars visible in the FOV with the comet.

Looked for Comet ISON but I could not see it in the finder or in the 6" scope. I tried for ~ 20 minutes then gave up.

Comet Encke was too low for me to view due to some houses and trees; same was true for Comet LINEAR.

Edited by Edward E (11/12/13 12:53 PM)


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LivingNDixie
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Edward E]
      #6190482 - 11/12/13 11:40 AM

Caught Lovejoy this morning, was real nice in the 10X50s.

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Nick Anderson
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6190609 - 11/12/13 12:36 PM Attachment (26 downloads)

Here is a sketch I made of Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) in my 8-inch on the morning of November 11. The view was better two nights prior (I gave transparency a 9/10 that night instead of a 6/10). The comet's change in position was noticeable after over a half hour of observation.

-Nick Anderson


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Edward E
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6190648 - 11/12/13 12:56 PM

Nice sketch; looks very much like what I saw this AM except I did not see the westward extension that you have drawn but there was some dust and humidity mixing with the eastern light dome of my area.

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the1andonlyfinn
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Edward E]
      #6191977 - 11/13/13 01:23 AM

Observed from the San Bernardino Mountains on Monday morning.
Lovejoy was naked eye! Star like, but it made it incredibly easy to aim the 8x42 and 15x70 binos at. In the XT8, the tail was faint but unmistakable, the large coma almost looked like a fried egg.
ISON was less impressive than Lovejoy, and I never caught it in my binoculars, but showed up well in the XT8 at low power, it's tail seemed brighter than Lovejoy's.
Encke featered a small but bright nucleus, tail popped in and out of view with the sun rising.

I never caught a view of LINEAR.

But three comets in an hour? I couldn't be happier!


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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6192084 - 11/13/13 06:29 AM

Once again I observed Lovejoy this morning (11/13). View similar to what I saw last Friday morning but this time I could easily detect Lovejoy's movement against the background stars. I might have also detected a thin faint tail faceing a west northwest direction. If I saw this tail it was at the limit of what I could detect. Observations made with my 10" refl at 76x and 174x. I'm observing from a white zone.

Rich (RLTYS)


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Glen A W
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #6192120 - 11/13/13 07:28 AM

Hello,

I observed Lovejoy this morning. It was easy to find - I just scanned the area for about 3 seconds with 80mm binoculars. Just as I was starting, a very bright -3 mag pass of the ISS was seen.

Lovejoy was very big and easy to see from my mag 6.5 skies. A broad tail heading roughly opposite the Sun was faint but not hard to see. I was impressed with the size of the comet - a diameter of about 1/4-1/3 degree was apparent with direct vision. The overall appearance was like Comet Machholz of 2004, but I don't recall seeing a tail on that one with these same binoculars.

I did not notice the green color today. Nine days ago, the color seemed apparent but the comet looked much smaller then.

With the Moon coming into the sky, everyone should use the next couple of days to see these morning comets. I did not have time to try for the others, as they are quite low. ISON is really getting into its daredevil dive toward the Sun! Glen


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Mike C
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/05/08

Loc: Cornwall, UK
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Glen A W]
      #6192170 - 11/13/13 08:22 AM

I finally had the clear morning I've been waiting for, and rose at 5am for some comet-spotting!

Comet Lovejoy was spectacular, virtually overhead for me by that time. I can only echo what others have said about the massive increase in its coma size, brightness and tail prominence. I can't wait to try imaging it!

This was the first time I've seen comet ISON. This was spotted easily below the 'bowl' of Virgo, with my C8 (f/6.3 focal reducer and 30mm Plossl). The coma was small and round, reminiscent of a distant globular cluster, but with a tail . This was straight, not fanning out noticibly, and not a lot fainter than the coma. ISON was also visible in my 9 x 60mm finderscope, but was not prominent through it.

I spent most of the 45min session searching in vain for LINEAR X1. Seems I haven't been the only one with difficulties spotting this comet!

Finally, no luck with Encke either - but this was because its location had not cleared the horizon before morning twilight set in.

Sky transparency was excellent, and my site is in the yellow/green zone (on the edge of a village).

Regards,


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BrooksObs
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Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6192279 - 11/13/13 09:26 AM

C/ISON found to have brightened abruptly by a magnitude since I saw it on the morning of the 11th. Comet quite obvious, coma moderately condensed and distinctly larger in size with 15x70B than before - now an easy object, although loosing altitude quickly each morning. Total integrated magnitude 7.4, coma upwards of 8', DC 6, tail hinted at be not clearly seen.

Comet Lovejoy an impressive, large object, visible to the unaided eye and situated not far from the zenith just above the "Sickle" in Leo. With 10x50B, magnitude 5.7, coma diameter 14', DC 5, no obvious tail.

2P/Encke now at too small an elongation from the Sun to be seen here before twilight brightens the sky beyond hopes of detection. This morning certainly fainter than magnitude 7.0 at 5:30a.m.

BrooksObs


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Bill Whitehead
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Reged: 07/11/09

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6192283 - 11/13/13 09:29 AM

Lovejoy is a binocular object in my white zone backyard. I looked for ISON, but it was lost in the haze. Tomorrow I'll bring out my 8" Dob and take a look at both. I'm hoping to go to Sandy Hook NJ this weekend and search for all four comets over the ocean before the sun comes up.

Cheers, Bill


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BrooksObs
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Bill Whitehead]
      #6192294 - 11/13/13 09:36 AM

Bill - This Saturday morning is the final pre-dawn without interference from the full moon's light and even then the dark interal lasts only a brief 20-30 minutes. So take this into consideration in your weekend planning.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (11/13/13 09:37 AM)


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Bill Barlow
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6192400 - 11/13/13 10:37 AM

I also tried to find Linear this morning, but didn't see it with my Meade 10 ACF. I have light glow from Kansas City in the northeastern horizon, so this may have played a role. I had finder charts and am fairly positive I was searching in the right area. Is this comet fairly dim as far as visual magnitude is concerned? Lovejoy was very easy and very bright with a bright core and a faint tail.

Bill


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nytecam
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Reged: 08/20/05

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6192434 - 11/13/13 11:01 AM

Hi aa6ww - I'd like to make visual obs on these comets but my eyes and skies won't let me :-)

Best nytecam


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Mike B.
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: nytecam]
      #6192474 - 11/13/13 11:28 AM

I've finally seen ISON visually after trying unsuccessfully to see it 4 or 5 times previously. Tuesday, Nov 12th I saw it after studying the charts and looking in the right spot. It was visible with averted vision only. I was using 15x70 binoculars in 3/5 transparent skies. But, I was still not sure, since my "averted imagination" could have been a factor.

On Wednesday, Nov 13th, I purposely went without looking at the charts and found it and it was obvious in the 15x70's. I could see it as a bright spot with a slender elongation towards the west-northwest in 4/5 skies. I then switched to my Celestron Comet Catcher 5.5" scope and an 18mm wide-angle eyepiece (not mounted and I was using it hand-held) and could see it clearly with a central condensation visible. Elongation was more pronounced and it looked more like a comet with a tail than a nebulous spot.

Lovejoy was visible through high altitude clouds in both binoculars and the 5.5" scope. The clouds moved out the way a little and I got a good look at it in the 5.5" Comet Catcher. A nice tail was visible and a big, diffuse coma.

Its just too cool to see two comets in binoculars in one morning, let me tell you.


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6192578 - 11/13/13 12:25 PM

I think LINEAR X1 is done. By that, I mean i think its disbursed so much, opened up so much that its basically transparent now. I saw it this weekend with an 8" refractors and it was nearly invisible. I could not see it in my C11 because my field of view wasn't large enough to see the edges. I knew where it was because at that time, it was exactly 4 degrees above Arcturus. I had to stare into my eyepiece for quite a long time before it began to show up. In my 4" refractor, I had to tap the scope to see anything at all. It was over a deg in size. In my friends 8" ISTAR F/6 8" refractor, it was nearly as transparent, but because i was using more aperture, it was easier to see, but again, nearly invisible. At best, I think it will be seen only by astrophotography now.
Of course this was just before sunrise, so I wasnt able to get the comet much more than maybe 10 degs above the horizon at best.

...Ralph


Quote:

I finally had the clear morning I've been waiting for, and rose at 5am for some comet-spotting!

Comet Lovejoy was spectacular, virtually overhead for me by that time. I can only echo what others have said about the massive increase in its coma size, brightness and tail prominence. I can't wait to try imaging it!

This was the first time I've seen comet ISON. This was spotted easily below the 'bowl' of Virgo, with my C8 (f/6.3 focal reducer and 30mm Plossl). The coma was small and round, reminiscent of a distant globular cluster, but with a tail . This was straight, not fanning out noticibly, and not a lot fainter than the coma. ISON was also visible in my 9 x 60mm finderscope, but was not prominent through it.

I spent most of the 45min session searching in vain for LINEAR X1. Seems I haven't been the only one with difficulties spotting this comet!

Finally, no luck with Encke either - but this was because its location had not cleared the horizon before morning twilight set in.

Sky transparency was excellent, and my site is in the yellow/green zone (on the edge of a village).

Regards,




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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6192584 - 11/13/13 12:28 PM

By the way, my article on seeing 4 comets in one night got approved in the article section of cloudy nights, pretty cool!!

http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=2930

...Ralph


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6192666 - 11/13/13 01:18 PM

Quote:

By the way, my article on seeing 4 comets in one night got approved in the article section of cloudy nights, pretty cool!! http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=2930 ...Ralph




Ralph congrats on getting your article published and thanks for starting this visual observation focused thread


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Aquarellia
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Reged: 10/27/12

Loc: Provence, France
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6192674 - 11/13/13 01:21 PM

Yes, thank you for this thread, my favorite one since weeks. And whaw for your article!

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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6192676 - 11/13/13 01:22 PM

I observed Lovejoy for the third time this morning and finally saw ISON as well, observing from my suburban location. At first I could not pick up ISON in my 15x70 binocs but a bit later came back out with my 80mm ED scope using an 18mm ep (approx 34x) to initially see it. Lovejoy was very bright and easy to see in both 10x50 and 15x70 binocs.

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Bill Barlow
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6193065 - 11/13/13 05:06 PM

Maybe that is why I couldn't see LINEAR in my Meade 10 this morning. I thought that I saw a very faint circular patch of light in the region the comet was supposed to be, but couldn't be 100% sure since averted vision was needed. But Lovejoy was beautiful! Will try for Ison in early December as it is too log in the east for me to see given the trees and houses.

Bill


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Bill Barlow]
      #6193073 - 11/13/13 05:11 PM

I was able to observe Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) again this morning from my red zone backyard. It was at an earlier time than my two previous sightings so the comet was a bit lower in altitude. In addition, the Moon had not yet set and the transparency was not as good as on Monday morning. It was also colder.

I used only the 10x50 Celestron Ultima binocular this time. The comet was located to the northeast of the fourth-magnitude star Kappa Leonis and north of the third-magnitude star Epsilon Leonis. It was a bit dim but was definitely present with averted vision.

I also viewed M35, M36, M37, M38, M41, M42 and the Sword of Orion, M44, M45, NGC 2244, NGC 2264, Collinder 65, Collinder 69, Collinder 70, the Hyades, and Mellotte 20. The Hyades and Mellotte 20 (the Alpha Persei Association) were high overhead at the time and were striking binocular targets.

Dave Mitsky


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6193356 - 11/13/13 07:31 PM

I'm getting reports that comet ISON has just outburst and is sporting 3 tails and currently sitting at magnitude 1.
This is huge! Time to bring out the wide field binoculars or scopes!

...Ralph


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Nick Anderson
super member


Reged: 04/21/13

Loc: Virginia, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6193382 - 11/13/13 07:42 PM

Quote:

I'm getting reports that comet ISON has just outburst and is sporting 3 tails and currently sitting at magnitude 1.
This is huge! Time to bring out the wide field binoculars or scopes!




Are they saying magnitude 1, or a brightening of 1 magnitude? Trying to get more information on this right now.

-Nick Anderson


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brianb11213
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6193394 - 11/13/13 07:48 PM

Quote:

Are they saying magnitude 1, or a brightening of 1 magnitude? Trying to get more information on this right now.



Probably a brightening of one magnitude. Latest news (reported by a solar system expert at our regional astro soc meeting this evening) is that the dust production rate has doubled in the last 24 hours. Probably indicates breakup starting - but IF it survives perihelion it MIGHT be a naked eye object in the second week of December.

My suggestion is to grab a look at it in the next few days if the weather allows, as I very much doubt that it will survive perihelion.


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Nick Anderson
super member


Reged: 04/21/13

Loc: Virginia, USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: brianb11213]
      #6193418 - 11/13/13 08:05 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Are they saying magnitude 1, or a brightening of 1 magnitude? Trying to get more information on this right now.



Probably a brightening of one magnitude. Latest news (reported by a solar system expert at our regional astro soc meeting this evening) is that the dust production rate has doubled in the last 24 hours. Probably indicates breakup starting - but IF it survives perihelion it MIGHT be a naked eye object in the second week of December.

My suggestion is to grab a look at it in the next few days if the weather allows, as I very much doubt that it will survive perihelion.




Ok, that sounds more reasonable. Can't wait to catch it again this coming morning!

-Nick Anderson


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kfiscus
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6193427 - 11/13/13 08:10 PM

I was able to get LINEAR X1 on the morning of the 12th. It was nice to see 'Son of Holmes'. I had to wait for weeks before the weather and my schedule would allow an attempt.

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Dean Norris
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kfiscus]
      #6193721 - 11/13/13 11:07 PM

I was inspired by Ralph's post about viewing all 4 comets in one viewing session and set out to do the same. I was fortunate to observe 3 comets, with the exception being Comet Linear, from my backyard on the morning of the 13th . The sky was clear with transparency at 5 with fair seeing being 5-6 on a scale of 1-10. I began observing at 4am.

First was Lovejoy which was the brightest and easily seen in the 9x50 viewfinder. My favorite view in my 10" newt was at 110x using a 14mm 100* ep. In fact all 3 comets looked best with this ep. Lovejoy looked very good in 7x50 binoculars. Couldn't see Lovejoy without optical aid. Lovejoy was the brightest and largest of the 3. The bright nucleus with the outer coma with a hint of tail was a special sight.

Next I observed ISON which was harder to find since it was lower in elevation but still relatively easy. This was my 4th observation of this comet. Since my backyard conditions are inferior to the dark site where I saw Comet ISON 3 times before , I wasn't sure I would be able to find it at home. It was very faint in the 9x50 viewfinder. At 110x, ISON appeared smaller and fainter than Lovejoy but it's tail seemed longer though very faint.

I saw Comet Encke low on the horizon between 2 trees. Encke looked looked fainter and smaller than ISON, but not by much.

I searched for Linear and at one point I thought I saw something very faint but couldn't really be sure.

It was great session. Looking forward to more comet observations.

Dean


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dean Norris]
      #6193874 - 11/14/13 01:34 AM

There's an image of a possible Comet ISON disconnection event posted
at http://spaceweathergallery.com/indiv_upload.php?upload_id=89572

Dave Mitsky


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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6193990 - 11/14/13 05:27 AM

After following PannStarr and Lemmon, I really didn't want to follow another thread that was just bombarded with everyone's photos of the same thing. and instead, wanted to create this for those of us that actually enjoy visually seeing these comets and discussing what we saw and how we saw them. So far its been going well in here.
Thanks for the thumbs up!!

......Ralph

Quote:

Yes, thank you for this thread, my favorite one since weeks. And whaw for your article!




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Tom Laskowski
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6194011 - 11/14/13 06:38 AM

Yesterday morning (13th) ISON was barely visible in my 15x70s. This morning it is dramatically brighter and appears as a small, round fuzzball. Anyone else notice this? Maybe things are looking up for naked eye prospects.

edit: I should have read the few posts above that mention this.

Edited by Tom Laskowski (11/14/13 06:43 AM)


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steveyo
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Tom Laskowski]
      #6194052 - 11/14/13 07:18 AM

I looked at Lovejoy and ISON this morning using my Canon 10x30IS binos.

I'd searched unsuccessfully for ISON from my red-zone backyard several times, but this AM, I finally saw it. ISON looked like a tiny globular cluster, clearly nonstellar, and I was thrilled to finally see it.

Lovejoy was much easier, a big fuzzy spot NE of Leo's mane.

Encke was to low for my horizon or I would have tried for it, too.


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dan777
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Tom Laskowski]
      #6194063 - 11/14/13 07:31 AM

ISON - wow, this was the biggest change in a 24 hour period of any comet I have ever seen. This morning (14th) I could see a much brighter coma and the nucleus. I viewed it at 85x and 120x. It was easily visible in my 9x50 finder.

LOVEJOY is still king of the hill.
ENCKE remains very faint.
LINEAR has eluded me and I think I have to write that one off.
NEVSKI - cannot see this one either.
My morning session yesterday (13th) started off with a bright meteor


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6194074 - 11/14/13 07:39 AM

I observed both Lovejoy and ISON again this morning. I thought that ISON seemed noticeably brighter than just the day before, which is confirmed by the posts above from last night and earlier this morning. I saw ISON in my 80mm scope and also 15x70 and 10x50 binocs. At 10X it looked almost stellar and I might not have identified it unless I knew exactly where it was among the background stars.

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kcolter
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6194111 - 11/14/13 08:28 AM

Saw four of the five morning comets this AM in Missouri. Nevski was visible in large Dobsonian but I could not definitely see it in 14X100 binoculars. I saw ISON in binoculars for the first time. Lovejoy is a joy, Encke was very dim in the large binoculars. I could not see Linear in binoculars. Logistics of my observing site would not let me use the large Dob on the comets low in the eastern sky. November in Missouri typically has about 3 clear nights in the whole month so I felt very fortunate to see comets the last two mornings.

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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kcolter]
      #6194152 - 11/14/13 09:01 AM

Quote:

November in Missouri typically has about 3 clear nights in the whole month so I felt very fortunate to see comets the last two mornings.




Same here. I usually see very little clear skies in Nov after the first week of the month so it was very unusual for me to have back to back clear mornings this time of the year. I am Very blessed to have these clear skies, and before the moon begins to interfear.


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Mike B.
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6194173 - 11/14/13 09:17 AM

I observed it this morning for the third time. Man, what a change from yesterday! I was using 15x70 binoculars and it just stood out like a sore thumb. Color was easily visible and intense. You could tell right away that this was a comet and not a star in the 15x70's.

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Glen A W
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike B.]
      #6194299 - 11/14/13 10:39 AM

I believe the color is the most intense I have seen in a comet since Hyakutake was inbound back in 1996. Though it's completely subjective, I recall it being very green, also.

With Lovejoy, I really just gasped the first time I turned it up in a 4 inch refractor, it was so blue-green. This was not apparent in smaller binoculars, however.

I wonder what causes the strong green color? [cue for JB]

GW


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Glen A W]
      #6194903 - 11/14/13 04:16 PM

The color is due to diatomic carbon (C2) and not cyanogen.

http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/5664654/page...

http://astrogeeks.com/Bliss/MetaGuide/images/cometvz13.html

http://www.astrosurf.com/buil/us/linear-a2/a2_1107010_s.gif

Dave Mitsky


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BluesNebula
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6195271 - 11/14/13 07:14 PM

Both LOVEJOY and ISON were easy targets for the C8 w/ the right the coordinates this morning here in western Nevada. Each appeared well w/in the finderscope FOV in their respective parts of the sky. ISON was spectaculor w/ long tail readily apparent.

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RolandosCY
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Tom Laskowski]
      #6195929 - 11/15/13 04:19 AM Attachment (39 downloads)

Here are the drawings from this morning's observation. Comets can be so very different.... As you can see I sketched both of them with the same instrument minutes apart. It is possible that Lovejoy might have been "victimized" as I noticed that dawn was breaking as I was drawing it, but still...

ISON is more typical of a comet, the tail appeared bi-forked with a brightening near the coma on one side. This brightening was less apparent at lower magnifications. Higher magnifications reduced the contrast of the (still) faint tail with the sky. I am not sure it is real...

Lovejoy has started to evolve into a galaxy-like fuzzy, with a non-centered core. The tail, although more evident than before, is still very diffuse. This morning Lovejoy was nicely framed by three stars, with the tail extending into the opening...

Both comets were readily visible in both 10x50 and 15x70 binoculas, with ISON showing a rather intense neon-like greenish hue, while Lovejoy appeared more white. The latter comet could be detected naked eye with averted vision from my suburban locality. I believe I spotted ISON naked eye as well, as with averted vision I could perceive something at its position, and there are no similarly bright stars nearby, but it was almost at my vision's limit.


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Aquarellia
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: RolandosCY]
      #6195977 - 11/15/13 05:54 AM Attachment (47 downloads)

Hi all,
Quite early,... I went to a dark sky site this morning, nov. 15th, Lovejoy was still an easy naked eye object but we can detect ISON as a naked eye object too! ISON is now very different that two nights ago. Here follows a sketch o(watercolor) of ISON that I made with a 12"Dobson 40mm EP

Edited by Aquarellia (11/15/13 06:00 AM)


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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6195988 - 11/15/13 06:21 AM

Most impressive, thanks for the view.

Rich (RLTYS)


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
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Reged: 12/26/04

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #6196021 - 11/15/13 07:10 AM

Nice sketches you guys!!!

I was able to spot Ison this morning just after 6:00 am even though the sky was hazy. Estimated mag was @ 3 or 4 and all I could really see was the nucleus and surrounding fluff like a globular because it was so hazy out.

I first saw it with a pair of 7x35 binocs, then at 35x with my 34mm ES 68 eyepiece in my 10 inch reflector. I then used my 9mm ES 100 at 133x to see the nucleus which was stellar.

No tail was seen at all because the skies were hazy, but I was really thrilled to have seen it at all! I'm going to keep looking for it every chance I get now.

I also got treated to a really nice view of Jupiter at 218x with my 5.5mm Meade 5000 WP UWA after that! I could have saw Mercury as well, but by that time, heavy, thick clouds rolled in.

Cheers!


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Glen A W
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #6196261 - 11/15/13 10:23 AM

I observed ISON about 540 local time. I could not believe the difference. We had icy haze like we get this time of year, but the comet shone through and I saw the tail as in the excellent drawings above. Even when it was so hazy that Spica and the other stars of Virgo were hazed out, I could still track the comet in my 4 inch refractor. It is far brighter that a couple of days ago! GW

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eps0mu0
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Loc: San Francisco, CA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Glen A W]
      #6196530 - 11/15/13 12:59 PM

After several days of morning fog, this morning was clear. I picked up the finder charts I had printed previously, grabbed by Bushnell 10x50's and went outside, at ~4:45am PST. The bright street light at the curb obviated the need for a flashlight. The sky was clear, with Mars and Regulus immediately visible. After a few minutes of getting used tot he sky, I perused the finder chart, and swept from Leo towards Leo Minor with the binoc's. A few sweeps, then... there it was, Comet Lovejoy, very bright and obvious, even with the light pollution! I put down the bino's, and swept through the area again, just to make sure it wasn't some optical illusion. It was a big, bright, and obvious fuzzball, with a condensed inner nucleus. It was almost directly overhead, or at least that what my neck was telling me.
Looking down towards the Eastern horizon, I could tell there was no way I would be able to see anything through the bright haze. Maybe I'll look for a better site this weekend.
J.F.


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nicknacknock
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: eps0mu0]
      #6197406 - 11/15/13 10:44 PM

ISON at 05:00 this morning was a beautiful sight in my 15x70 binos. Really easy to find, a few degrees above Spica and just off to the right.

Bright core, a wide tail but not very elongated visually from the suburbs. Can't have everything.... I will probably go at it again tomorrow morning, but also take my 80mm refractor and try to punch through with some medium magnifications.

I want to compare views between the two evenings, even though tomorrow the moon will "grace" us with her presence until 6:00 am.


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: nicknacknock]
      #6197661 - 11/16/13 06:03 AM

I went out this Friday morning and took a look at comet ISON. I brought my 25x100 binoculars with me, since I needed a wide field view with some decent aperture. I was happy I brought them. ISON was pretty spectacular. The entire field of view of my large binoculars was filled with the comet at 2.5 degrees. It had a large bright star like head, an even larger fuzzy coma surrounding the head, and the tail swept up in the 1 o:clock position from the head. The Coma was probably close in size to how we see M13 in the sky, and when swept back to the tail, seemed to cross over itself, and come to nearly one point, then it fanned out into two separate forked tails with a dark area between the two tails. I didn't see a 3rd tail, I would have needed darker skies which I may visit tonight up in ice house, if the weather holds out. Large binoculars are considered comet hunters, because when you use both eyes, you get more contras which makes very dim details resolve easier. Id estimate the comet was as long as 2.5 deg's from what I can see in the skies I was in, thats 5 full moons side by side. It was pretty spectacular really, at least to me. It wasn't naked eye visible though, but i think its right on the cusp of being so. The moon was down, so my view to the east was dark for the area I was in. Maximum elevation of the comet was about 25 degs above the horizon. This was enough for very crisp views with lots of contras. ISON was about 7 degs above Spica, and to the left of the constellation Corvus. Its also now high enough in the sky to just go out in your back yard and observe it before twilight, but you have to know where to look. Even under Sacramento skies, it shouldn't be a problem seeing with 50mm binoculars or a small 80mm refractor, and of course, anything larger.
Its worth making the effort to get up and seeing this. These seldom come around, and this one could be gone completely in 2 weeks if it doesn't survive the pass around the sun on Thanksgiving day.
Good luck to anyone who looks for it.

...Ralph


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MessiToM
scholastic sledgehammer
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6198082 - 11/16/13 12:19 PM

I too am currently impressed and pleased with how my efforts paid off observing ISON this am.

I could easily see a "long" tail and the coma was brighter/bigger BUT I really enjoyed its color of blue/green

All this at such a low alt even.


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Jeremy Perez
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: MessiToM]
      #6199593 - 11/17/13 09:55 AM Attachment (46 downloads)

Thanks for starting this thread, Ralph. The observations are great, and loving the sketches!

I had my first view of ISON this morning. I woke up at 5am and the sky looked clear out my north-facing window. So I threw something on, rummaged for the binoculars and headed outside...where I saw fast moving clouds all over the east horizon. They were rolling along in this typical Flagstaff orographic pattern where they haul off at warp speeds & you think a big batch is quickly moving out of the way, only for another huge new clump to materialize in the same spot..over and over again. But it looked it was consistently clearer just a bit further east. So I jumped in the car and drove a few miles east to a spot that had some clearing in the sky near Spica.

The comet was a pretty quick find when there weren't clouds squatting on top of it. The coma sported a soft blue-green color and a short, maybe 15 arc minute long tail. Approaching twilight, moonlight, haze and intermittent clouds--the comet was packing a decent punch to kick through that mess. I didn't attempt to estimate magnitude. Degree of condensation was around 3 from the binocular perspective. I need to see if I can squeak in a telescopic observation in the next couple days.

Digital illustration showing the comet as it appeared above Spica


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Jeremy Perez]
      #6199626 - 11/17/13 10:24 AM

Nice sketch Jeremy, I am hoping for clear skies tomorrow. I am wondering if I will see any tail in my suburban location with the skyglow, streetlights, etc.

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azskies
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Reged: 04/29/07

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Jeremy Perez]
      #6199899 - 11/17/13 12:58 PM

Quote:

Thanks for starting this thread, Ralph. The observations are great, and loving the sketches!

I had my first view of ISON this morning. I woke up at 5am and the sky looked clear out my north-facing window. So I threw something on, rummaged for the binoculars and headed outside...where I saw fast moving clouds all over the east horizon. They were rolling along in this typical Flagstaff orographic pattern where they haul off at warp speeds & you think a big batch is quickly moving out of the way, only for another huge new clump to materialize in the same spot..over and over again. But it looked it was consistently clearer just a bit further east. So I jumped in the car and drove a few miles east to a spot that had some clearing in the sky near Spica.

The comet was a pretty quick find when there weren't clouds squatting on top of it. The coma sported a soft blue-green color and a short, maybe 15 arc minute long tail. Approaching twilight, moonlight, haze and intermittent clouds--the comet was packing a decent punch to kick through that mess. I didn't attempt to estimate magnitude. Degree of condensation was around 3 from the binocular perspective. I need to see if I can squeak in a telescopic observation in the next couple days.

Digital illustration showing the comet as it appeared above Spica




Had no luck here in Prescott on Thursday. Will try tomorrow when the skies clear out after our "cold front" went through.

Jeff


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Phillip Creed
Idiot Seeking Village
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: azskies]
      #6201126 - 11/18/13 06:22 AM

Saw C/2012 S1 ISON and C/2013 R1 Lovejoy for the first time this morning prior to work. The full moon didn't do me any favors, but the moon is the great equalizer--my site in a city of 75,000 wasn't going to be much worse than a pristine site under such conditions. I had passing clouds which really hindered the horizon view, but the overhead was clear ~50% of the time. It was time to utilize "guerrilla astronomy" tactics, and that called for my 15x70 Oberwerk binoculars.

"Take what the defense gives you" is the football analogy, so I concentrated on seeing Lovejoy first. *Huge* comet, easily 15' in size, and moderately (DC ~ 5), but given all the moonlight, I couldn't see any tail. Couldn't get a decent mag estimate; suffice to say it was bright.

ISON proved frustrating from home. I just couldn't get my horizon to be clear in that direction, and I watched helplessly as the southern portion of the sky was clear. If I was only a few miles south, I could have seen it.

Then it dawned on me--duh, I work a few miles south of home! So, on a hunch, I threw the binoculars in the car and drove to work. I clock in at 6:00 AM, but I had about 5 minutes to spare when I got to work. There were no bright lights towards the east or southeast in our parking lot. Good enough.

The sky around Spica was clear ~30% of the time, but it was better than I had at home. And all I needed to do was aim for Spica in a set of binos, and sure enough, there was ISON at the bottom of the FOV. It was very condensed, looking like a slightly fuzzy, 3'-wide small blob, almost like a "diffuse star". Some hint of tail pointing directly at Spica, but the conditions made it tough. Estimated brightness (very rough) is about magnitude 5.0 based on defocusing the nearby comparison stars 68, 76 and 82 Virginis and the comet simultaneously, but again, this was a *hurried* observation. Still felt good to finally see it.

Clear Skies,
Phil


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djeber2
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Reged: 07/02/04

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Phillip Creed]
      #6201576 - 11/18/13 12:12 PM

I observed Lovejoy w/ 15x70 Binocs and ISON w/ 15x70 Binocs and my 80mm refractor at 43x this morning between 5:25 and 5:55 local time from my suburban back yard. Lovejoy was easily found and a very nice bright object despite the full moon in the west. ISON was more of a challenge due to its low altitude and my local sky conditions and street lights to the east. I did suceed in seeing ISON in both the scope and binocs. I thought I saw the hint of a tail on Lovejoy.

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stargazer424
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Reged: 10/03/05

Loc: Central NJ
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6201922 - 11/18/13 03:31 PM

I had a cloudy weekend here, so no ISON for me. Now here's hoping it survives it pass of the sun. If it does, i assume it would be visible just after sunset instead of before sunrise?

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Mirzam
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: stargazer424]
      #6201946 - 11/18/13 03:41 PM

No. The best visibility will still be in the east before sunrise, although it may be possible to catch a glimpse after sunset right around the 1st. The recent S&T online update discusses this.

JimC


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bob irvin
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Reged: 03/22/11

Loc: Greater Los Angeles, CA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6201958 - 11/18/13 03:47 PM

Wondering what I saw:

I've been following the posts on ISCON & what I've observed doen't seem to jive.....

Been out 2 mornings now looking for ISCON. This morning and yesterday morning. I can see Spica clearly but haven't been able to see the comet through my 7x50 binocs.

HOWEVER

Also for two these same two mornings when it becomes brighter I've seen a very bright object about 1 degree long in exactly the same position (ESE) both mornings. Through the binocs it appears to have a core to the lower left and a very distinctive tail going to about the 2:00 position. This was clearly visible to the unaided eye and this AM I say it with the sun just becoming visible above the horizon.

Any thoughts, is the comet or a coincidental contrail in exactly the same position looking exactly the same both mornings??

bob

Edited by bob irvin (11/18/13 03:48 PM)


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stargazer424
sage


Reged: 10/03/05

Loc: Central NJ
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6202002 - 11/18/13 04:09 PM

Quote:

No. The best visibility will still be in the east before sunrise, although it may be possible to catch a glimpse after sunset right around the 1st. The recent S&T online update discusses this.

JimC




Darn...was hoping I wouldn't have to wake up early to see it...I'll be checking the updates to see if it survives and how much it brightens if it does.

When will we have a good comet that we can see at a normal hour


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Tonk
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: stargazer424]
      #6202149 - 11/18/13 05:27 PM

Quote:

Been out 2 mornings now looking for ISCON




Possibly because you should be looking for ISON


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the1andonlyfinn
member


Reged: 07/17/11

Loc: Rancho Cucamonga, California
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Tonk]
      #6202217 - 11/18/13 06:09 PM

My apartment complex unfortunately fixed its lights, so I had to contend with that, plus the full moon, plus a haze so thick I could barely see Spica.
The 15x70 bino attempt was an immediate bust, so I ran inside and grabbed my poorly-collimated XT8.

Starting at Spica at low power, I started looking for fuzzy stars. BAM- very fuzzy, very bluish-green, with a hint of tail!

I observed ISON a week ago from a nice mountain site and 4/5 seeing and transparency, and it looked brighter today. Not bad!


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: the1andonlyfinn]
      #6202613 - 11/18/13 09:38 PM Attachment (72 downloads)

Hello,

Our normal cloud cover and my work schedule has prevented me from observing much of anything for many weeks, but when I read about John Bortle's report last Thursday the 14th that Comet C/2012 S1 ISON had awakened I went out before work early the next morning to see what I could see.

The sky was clear everywhere except for the area around Spica--I couldn't even see Spica through the murk--so forget about seeing Comet ISON.

Imagine my surprise when this morning (Nov. 18th) it was clear here even though the forecast was for solid overcast. I threw a heavy coat over my bathrobe slipped on some warm boots, grabbed my image stabilised binoculars, and went outside to once again see what I could see. From the first floor porch I could see Spica through the trees so I went up on the upper deck.

From there Spica was just above the trees and ISON was an obvious faint smudge on the base of a triangle formed by 76 Vir (mag 5.18) and 68 Vir (mag 5.25) with Spica at the apex. As my eyes grew dark adapted, ISON became a brighter elongated fuzz patch with a stellar pseudonucleus. Using the defocused star method and the two nearby mag 5 stars, I estimated ISON at about mag 5.6 with a very condensed center.

As low as it was and with the bright almost full moon and looming sunrise, ISON has to be pretty doggone bright.

I made this sketch based on a field sketch and notes I took at the time.

@ Bob--from your description you were probably not seeing the comet--unless you are an experienced comet observer, ISON is hard to pick out now given the haze usually on the horizon, the bright Moon, and the twilight.

@ Jeremy Perez--great sketch Jeremy (as are the others in this thread)--you got a prety nice look at the comet.

@ the OP--I don't have a problem with comet threads that combine visual obs, sketches, and AP. The best AP images identify the time and date in UT and the cardinal directions as well as discussing what their images reveal. The best visual observations and sketches do the same thing. I like having my visual observations confirmed by images which are labeled so they can be compared. I also like having my mistakes confirmed by AP (not nearly as satisfying but still educational).

Edited by Special Ed (11/19/13 03:34 PM)


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Tommy5
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6202820 - 11/18/13 11:36 PM

Great sketch Michael , glad you got a chance to see the comet before it rounds the sun.

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Miliu
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Reged: 05/13/13

Loc: Japan
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Tommy5]
      #6203015 - 11/19/13 04:41 AM

This morning I managed to observe ISON and Lovejoy without difficulties from a nearby park in a red zone. Both were easy to spot with 15x70 binoculars. I saw a hint of green on ISON which made the early wake up worthed. Transparency and seeing conditions were both good.
Encke, however, was extreamely dim on my 8'' dob. Adverted vision was a must but still it was bearably visible. By the time it went relatively high in the sky the background was already blue.

Anyone there on similar conditions had better luck with Encke?

Emilio


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Miliu]
      #6203035 - 11/19/13 05:38 AM

The forecast has been dead wrong for the entire night. It's almost completely overcast at the moment and the satellite maps show clouds, clouds, and more clouds, so no Comet ISON for me this morning.

Dave Mitsky


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6203058 - 11/19/13 06:15 AM

Me too, Dave. I had my 15x70's ready but it is solid overcast here (contrary to the forecast). I hope it clears off for the Wallops Island launch this evening.

Thanks, Tommy! I got lucky one night in a row.


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Mike C
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6203173 - 11/19/13 08:26 AM

After a week of cloud, this morning I made probably my last attempt to see ISON before perihelion.

I rose at 5:15am, but it was nearly 6am before ISON's location below Spica cleared the wooded valley side. Unfortunately the onset of twilight and the weather were against me. I think I saw ISON briefly as a small smudge in the twilight through my 7 x 50 binoculars, but my attempt to set up the 8" SCT was met by a hail shower and cloud that persisted while the sky lightened .

Regards,

Edited by Mike C (11/19/13 08:31 AM)


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6203671 - 11/19/13 12:38 PM

I caught a gap in the clouds around 4:15 this morning to observe Lovejoy in 15x70 and 80 mm optics. Looked about the same as before despite the bright moonlight. It soon clouded completely over again and could not get ISON this time.

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t.r.
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6203924 - 11/19/13 02:53 PM

Tomorrow morning is it! Myself and a buddy are making an attempt for both Ison and Lovejoy for the first time with 12x60 binos, C80SS and TMB92L...I think it will happen!!!

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Nick Anderson
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6204079 - 11/19/13 04:05 PM

I went out observing a half hour before astronomical twilight this morning from my orange zone site and caught some additional nice views of Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) and Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON). Even with a 97% illuminated Moon in the west, both were bright and easy objects for my 8-inch Dob.

Comet Lovejoy has now moved into southern Ursa Major. Surprisingly, it was barely detectable to the unaided eye as an extremely difficult averted vision object (5/5), conveniently near the midpoint between 55 Ursae Majoris (magnitude 4.8) and 57 Ursae Majoris (magnitude 5.3), only slightly more difficult than the latter star. It is still very apparent in binoculars; I thought I could even catch part of the tail with extreme difficulty in my 10x50's. In the telescope, it seemed to have a possible blue-green tinge. I estimated the coma at 5 arcminutes in size.

I had to wait out ISON until after the start of astronomical twilight due to its increasingly reduced day-by-day altitude on the horizon. This morning it happened to be in the same binocular FOV as Spica. I initially had some trouble identifying ISON in binoculars, until I realized that one of the "stars" I was using to map out the area was actually the comet itself. In my 10x50's, it was visible with direct vision, but its appearance was stellar. In the telescope, I estimated its coma at only about an arcminute in size, with a bright condensed core. A green hue was apparent. Hints of a tail were seen with difficulty within 10 arcminutes of the coma. Although ISON appeared brighter than Lovejoy, I failed to conclusively detect it with the unaided eye, likely due to the brightening of twilight.


My advice to others: don't give up on these two beautiful comets just because of the Moon!

-Nick Anderson


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kfiscus
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Nick Anderson]
      #6204195 - 11/19/13 05:15 PM

Finally got a clear morning after a week of clouds. The glare of the gibbous moon was awful. My buddy and I got Lovejoy and ISON with some 25x100 binos. ISON's long, thin tail was nice and noticeable to averted vision. ISON took its sweet time climbing high enough to catch. It was barely naked-eye this AM because of lunar light scatter. Both comets barely showed in the 9x50 finder because of the moon's interference. My buddy and I swore off any more attempts @ ISON until it swings around the sun on the 28th and later.

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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: kfiscus]
      #6205036 - 11/20/13 01:40 AM

Apparently, Comet ISON has experienced another outburst and is now shining at approximately magnitude 4.0.

http://spaceweather.com/archive.php?view=1&day=19&month=11&year=2013

Dave Mitsky


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ilovecomets
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6205161 - 11/20/13 06:50 AM

Observed ISON with a few friends from an orange site this morning. Moon was still pretty full, but also far enough to not impact too much. Comet was first visible about 3 degrees off horizon in binoculars. A few of us were able to see it naked eye until twilight kicked in. We estimated 2 degree tail in binoculars and slightly larger in 3-4" scopes.

Last viewing was a week and a half ago. Comet has brightened significantly. We estimated it at around 3.5-4.0 magnitude. I strongly recommend everyone to get out and view before perihelion. There's no guarantee it will be there in a couple weeks.


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t.r.
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: t.r.]
      #6205223 - 11/20/13 08:16 AM

Quote:

Tomorrow morning is it! Myself and a buddy are making an attempt for both Ison and Lovejoy for the first time with 12x60 binos, C80SS and TMB92L...I think it will happen!!!




WoW! That was disappointing...a fuzzy star, no tail for Ison and No-Joy for Lovejoy with 12x60's! Of course my neighbors security light and the Moon did me no favors! Don't know how my buddy made out...hopefully better than me!


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Chuck Hards
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: t.r.]
      #6205234 - 11/20/13 08:31 AM

From my light-polluted backyard at 6 AM MST this morning, through a break in horizon-hugging clouds and bright moonlight, I could detect about a 2, maybe 2-1/2 degree long tail on ISON, with a bright, concentrated coma. The tail is pointed back in the general direction of Spica. Using my 40+ year-old 8x40mm Bushnell Wide Angle bino (10 degree true field).

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George N
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6205396 - 11/20/13 10:19 AM

This morning I was able to see Lovejoy easily in 10x50 binocs and it was quite nice in my 20x80s. No luck with ISON. There was a swath of cloud in that direction and by the time it really got high enough the sky was too bright.

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Scanning4Comets
Markus
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6205398 - 11/20/13 10:20 AM Attachment (29 downloads)

I set up my 10 inch reflector in my backyard at 4:45 am and in about 20 minutes I was out there with my 7x35 Tasco binocs, (which are lame lol), and I easily found Comet Lovejoy! I then used every eyepiece I had and saw the comet.

I could see a tail with averted vision and did a few sketches. Please excuse my poor drawings, but they are just for record keeping of my observations.

I tried for Ison, but lost it every time I went from my binocs to the scope because there were no guide stars to get me back there and the same happened to me as above: light cloud obscured it and by the time it got high enough, heavy twilight killed it.

Cheers,

Left pic: 34mm ES 68° / 35x. Right pic: 14mm ES 100° / 86x


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
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Reged: 12/26/04

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #6205399 - 11/20/13 10:21 AM Attachment (22 downloads)

Sketch #2:

Left pic: 9mm ES 100° / 133x. Right pic: 5.5mm Meade UW / 218x


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #6205402 - 11/20/13 10:22 AM Attachment (27 downloads)

Finally, me with my 10 inch reflector in my backyard:

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JustinW80
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Reged: 09/03/13

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #6205424 - 11/20/13 10:29 AM

I'm a beginner, and this was my first early morning session out with my telescope, due to all the active comets!

I went out at 5:30am, had everything set up and aligned by 5:45am, and I went on to observe three comets and three planets. A great morning!

When I first got out and took my bearings, I pointed my 15x70 binos at the bright object up high, and it turned out to be Jupiter. I'd gotten it in the binoculars before but never with the scope since I got it over the summer. Now was the chance!

I saw Lovejoy, LINEAR, and ISON. Then it was on to Mars and finally Jupiter. Banding and all 4 Galilean moons, just hanging there in front of my eye.

At 6:15a, about 15 minutes before sunrise, I tried once more to nail Mercury, which was hidden behind my neighbor's house earlier. There she was, just peeking over the rooftop.

It was cold, and I'm dragging now, but it was worth the early rise!


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Scanning4Comets
Markus
*****

Reged: 12/26/04

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: JustinW80]
      #6205444 - 11/20/13 10:42 AM

Awesome Justin!!! I also saw Mercury as well.

Cheers!


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Phillip Creed
Idiot Seeking Village
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: JustinW80]
      #6205448 - 11/20/13 10:43 AM

I had another view of C/2012 S1 ISON this morning from Canton, OH. Strong moonlight, the first vestiges of twilight and local light pollution made for very challenging conditions, but my work shift compelled me to observe the comet from our company's parking lot just prior to clocking in.

I had my 15x70 binoculars at the ready, and picked up the comet at 5:55 a.m. EST (Nov. 20.46 UT). The comet was much easier to see this morning vs. two days ago, even though it was lower. I'd estimate the strongly-condensed (DC ~ 7), 3'-wide coma had a total integrated brightness of about magnitude 4.1, with a 1/2-degree tail pointing almost straight at Spica.

It is interesting to note that the comet's elongation and solar distance right now is similar to where it will be during the peak observing window (Dec. 7-14). Fortunately, this period will have no moon interference, the comet's phase angle will increase, and it will be closer to us at this time. Barring no further surprises, if I were to hazard a guess as to what it'll look like during the second week of December, I'm guessing about 4th magnitude with a 5-10 degree tail under dark skies. Not a "Great Comet", but maybe a similar appearance to C/2004 F4 Bradfield and worth some lost sleep.

Clear Skies,
Phil


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Rocky68d
member


Reged: 11/01/09

Loc: Anacortes, WA USA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Phillip Creed]
      #6205933 - 11/20/13 03:22 PM

The skies finally cleared here in the upper left corner of the lower 48 to allow some comet viewing. Despite the moon and average transparency Lovejoy and ISON were both visible in my Fuji 7X50 binos with Lovejoy showing a short tail. ISON was faint and the tail was visible only with averted vision. Neither were naked eye objects. The best part of the show was a large meteor, not quite a bolide, that shot from the zenith to the south and burned up 10 degrees above the horizon. It left a long and impressive smoke train illuminated by the moon which lasted for 3 or 4 minutes before the winds aloft broke it up. All in all, well worth getting out of a warm bed to venture out in subfreezing temperatures.

Edited by Rocky68d (11/20/13 07:16 PM)


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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Rocky68d]
      #6206060 - 11/20/13 04:48 PM

ISON spotted while still in the trees at about 5:20 a.m. and I was amazed at its intensity as seen with my 15x70B. This morning C/ISON reminded me very much of the way Ikeya-Seki looked during one of my last pre-T sightings in early October of '65.

Once clear of the trees, with twilight already having begun, surprisingly bright with an intensely condensed coma roughly 2.5' in diameter, DC = 8. Total magnitude after accounting for differential extinction was 4.5 , although in my opinion the available comparison stars were less than of first class, most for lack of a choice outside of spectral class K. Comet could be easily followed in binoculars long into twilight..a good sign for things to come!

BrooksObs


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MessiToM
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 12/21/09

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6206141 - 11/20/13 05:39 PM

Thanks for the reports. I havent gotten a clear horizon for about a week now to look again for myself.

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Phillip Creed
Idiot Seeking Village
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Reged: 07/25/06

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6206303 - 11/20/13 07:19 PM

Quote:

ISON spotted while still in the trees at about 5:20 a.m. and I was amazed at its intensity as seen with my 15x70B. This morning C/ISON reminded me very much of the way Ikeya-Seki looked during one of my last pre-T sightings in early October of '65.

Once clear of the trees, with twilight already having begun, surprisingly bright with an intensely condensed coma roughly 2.5' in diameter, DC = 8. Total magnitude after accounting for differential extinction was 4.5 , although in my opinion the available comparison stars were less than of first class, most for lack of a choice outside of spectral class K. Comet could be easily followed in binoculars long into twilight..a good sign for things to come!

BrooksObs




John,

Do think there's a chance there could be a sizable post-perihelion "bump" for Comet ISON?

Clear Skies,
Phil


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Starman81
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Phillip Creed]
      #6206683 - 11/20/13 11:10 PM

I got some Lovejoy last night and I do mean the comet!

I can't wake up in the middle of the night on a work night so I stayed up and caught it at 1:30am from my backyard and it was a decent 20* high. I couldn't tell that it had such an impressive tail, like Markus captured in his sketches.


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LivingNDixie
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Starman81]
      #6207361 - 11/21/13 11:23 AM

I caught ISON at 5:12 am CST on Nov 20. It was low and looked like a greenish fuzzy star with a hint of a tail. It was rather low. I was using 10x50 binoculars.

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Wes Stone
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: LivingNDixie]
      #6207394 - 11/21/13 11:40 AM

After some days of clouds, I went out on the morning of November 21st. I drove to a park with a decent eastern horizon and got there at around 5:20am. I am currently away from home with only my 10x42 binoculars on hand. Comet Lovejoy was an easy target in the binox, and in fact an easy naked-eye object even in moonlight. Limiting magnitude was 5.7, and I'd estimate Lovejoy's magnitude as around 4.9. The coma was large and fuzzy (10-15' in diameter?), condensed in the center but with no stellar nucleus visible at 10x. 1 degree of rather bright tail was visible, and beyond that another degree faintly visible.

ISON was in low clouds near the horizon to the upper right of Mercury. When I first saw it in the binox, it was quite starlike with a hint of tail. It was strongly reddened at low altitude, but as it rose the still-stellar coma took on an icy-cold green tint. A rather thin, faint tail stretched out for a couple of degrees, and seemed brighter on the SE side. I never was positive that I could see ISON with my naked eye.

Weather was pretty frigid with a biting wind. Conditions look promising (more frigid but less wind) for tomorrow morning, so I may go out again.

Wes Stone
Klamath Falls, OR


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Yaar
sage


Reged: 02/18/09

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Wes Stone]
      #6207627 - 11/21/13 01:54 PM

Thank you everyone for the reports. Keep 'em coming!

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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Phillip Creed]
      #6208576 - 11/21/13 11:17 PM






John,

Do think there's a chance there could be a sizable post-perihelion "bump" for Comet ISON?

Clear Skies,
Phil




With ISON's photometric behavior being so erratic up to this point, I certainly wouldn't totally rule out the possibility of such an event. However, I would note that according to JPL's comet guru Dr. Z. Sekanina in a recently published paper concerning the considerable similarities between small perihelion, dynamically "new" comets Seki-Lines and ISON, he expressed the opinion that the former object underwent a brief, but quite significant, perihelion dip in brightness. This does seem to account for Seki-Lines not being seen in daylight, as had been hoped for by some. I had previously attributed the odd failure (the comet theoretically should have reached -7) to other causes, but he may be right.

Any post-T enhancement of a comet's brightness is usually associated with a break-up of the nucleus. Once again, that is a possibility, if just a small one.

Anyway, if it is clear out my way on next Thursday, be assured that I'll be out looking for ISON in daylight, utilizing some of my highly specialized equipment and techniques created just for that purpose. And thereafter, I have the feeling many of us are going to be surprised to see what emerges from the morning twilight after perihelion.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (11/21/13 11:26 PM)


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MessiToM
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 12/21/09

Loc: Huntingdon PA
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #6208800 - 11/22/13 04:43 AM

ISON and ENCKE in STEREO_A's fov
Gif

http://spaceweather.com/images2013/22nov13/encke_ison_crop_srem_lr.gif?PHPSES...

Edited by MessiToM (11/22/13 04:44 AM)


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aa6ww
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 10/23/11

Loc: Sacramento, Calif.
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #6210684 - 11/23/13 03:57 AM

Its nice to know some out here are using telescopes to observe these comets instead of just binoculars. On weekdays its tough to get up and set up a scope when we have to go to work. Plus its getting so darn cold lately.
On weekends though. I gotta make my observations with a scope.
Again, its so darn cold now, the quick set up gear seems to be favored.

Lovejoy is looking real good now, since it gets fairly high now, and is sporting a nice size tail.


......Ralph

Quote:

Finally, me with my 10 inch reflector in my backyard:




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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6210806 - 11/23/13 07:36 AM

Got out and say Lovejoy this morning in 15x70 binocs. ISON was too low and in some low clouds and haze, I could not pick it out. Saw a short tail on Lovejoy from my suburban location.

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Mike C
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/05/08

Loc: Cornwall, UK
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6211324 - 11/23/13 12:45 PM

It was clear on Friday night (and hopefully tonight, too ), so I was able to view Comet Lovejoy. Sky transparency was good, but the waning gibbous Moon was high. Nevertheless, after first sighting it in Canes Venatici in 7 x 50mm binoculars, I was pleased to be able to see Lovejoy with the naked eye via averted vision.

I set up the Meade ED 127mm 'scope for observation (and imaging). The coma was bright, but smaller and much more concentrated than when I last saw it through a 'scope. The tail stretched across the 17mm Plossl field of view (56x).

I hope to have another look tonight - the Moon will have waned more, of course, but will be closer to Lovejoy, although the latter is heading North. Sky transparency looks to be poorer though, unfortunately.

Regards,


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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mike C]
      #6212760 - 11/24/13 08:32 AM

I did not try for ISON today due to forecasted clouds but I wonder if it is now too low to the horizon for most of us?

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Alsterling
newbie


Reged: 07/07/13

Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6213194 - 11/24/13 12:28 PM

Clear skies Sunday morning Nov 24, N53.5 W113.5 but no ISON:

Although the atmosphere was not pristine, it was pretty
good, with just a bit of mottling and thin horizontal layers, and temperature only at the freezing point!

Mercury at a bright mag -0.7 was fun to watch through binoculars. It was writhing and changing colors from dim white to bright red, enough that at first we thought it was an antenna light. After a while, we picked up Saturn at mag +0.6, *way* fainter than Mercury. I could see its motion against the distant communication tower. Then came mag 2.7 alpha Librae (Zubenelgenubi) noticeable one degree up (real degrees, not refracted altitude). These 3 allowed us to trianguate ISON. Try and try we did all the way to 7:40 (14:40 UT) with ISON at 3.5 degrees altitude and the Sun -5.4 degrees. By that point alpha Librae was pretty much lost. So ISON ain't bright!


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Mirzam
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Alsterling]
      #6213610 - 11/24/13 04:55 PM

Over on Spaceweather.com there is a photo from a gentleman in Spain that pretty much says it all. Very tough to see ISON at this point and mighty low in elevation. Not looking too bright either.

JimC


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Dave M
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6214442 - 11/25/13 03:59 AM

Got my first view of Comet Lovejoy this morning 3:30am EST.
Very easy in the Vixen Foresta 7 x 50`s and regardless of the moon interference and local light pollution.


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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave M]
      #6214463 - 11/25/13 04:53 AM

Now its a waiting game for us and ISON. I hope it survives. This is pretty fun stuff, waiting for the big show. So far ISON has been pretty good. It took awhile to live up to the hype but its been good so far.
All these comets have been great but the classic looking ones with the long tails are the most fun to look at.
Lets keep our fingers crossed and hope we get part two of the big ISON show very soon.

...Ralph


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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6214488 - 11/25/13 06:01 AM

I observed Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) again this morning from my red zone backyard at approximately 5:20 a.m. EST (10:20 UT) using Celestron Ultima 10x50 and Burgess Optical 15x70 binoculars. Despite the light from the 54% illuminated Moon and local light pollution, the comet was easily seen through the 15x70s. It resembled an unresolved globular cluster and was positioned north of the location of the spiral galaxy M63, which was not visible, and the sixth-magnitude star 19 Canes Venaticorum.

http://media.skyandtelescope.com/documents/Comets_Ison_Lovejoy_LateNov.pdf

I also took a look at the bright open clusters M44, which was almost overhead between the Moon and Jupiter, and M35 with the 15x70s.

Dave Mitsky


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Aquarellia
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6214492 - 11/25/13 06:07 AM Attachment (34 downloads)

Waiting for ISON we forget a little bit to have a look at Lovejoy. Lovejoy is very interesting and better placed for the northern hemisphere. This morning despite the moon light we can detect Lovejoy with unaided eye. Via binoculars 7x50 it’s very easy to see the tail. Here a sketch made at the EP of a telescope, the deal was to determine the colour, which was not so easy.
About the new comet C/2013 V3 (Nevski), no success, this one was much to close to the moon for any observation.
Michel

Edited by Aquarellia (11/25/13 06:10 AM)


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Peter Natscher
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6214917 - 11/25/13 11:34 AM

Observed Comet Lovejoy early this morning at 4:30am PST using my 24" StarStructure Dob with 21 Ethos and 8 Delos. Lovejoy showed a nice degree-long tail filling the entire fov in my 21 Ethos at 109X even with a bright last quarter Moon lighting up the sky. Transparency is now very good here on the Pacific coast in central California with rare low humidity of 50% for this time of year. Lovejoy also showed some extended uneven brightening protruding out of the S. side of the coma frontal curve. This brighter area covered half of the leading coma. Could this be a jet? A tiny white stellar core was visible with my 8 Delos at 289X.

Edited by Peter Natscher (11/25/13 11:36 AM)


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6219278 - 11/27/13 12:55 PM

Michel,

Very nice! I like that "classic" look--we're lucky to have a comet like this one around to view.


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Peter Natscher]
      #6219285 - 11/27/13 12:58 PM

Peter,

Nice observation and description. You should look at this sketch by Wes Stone. He made it on the 24th from Oregon.


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SteveRosenow
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6220276 - 11/27/13 08:43 PM

I visually observed C/2013 R1 with my 8" SCT three nights ago after a two-hour imaging run. Using a 40mm eyepiece, then switching it down to a 17mm Series 4000 Super Plossl, I noticed some definite structure and as many have noted, a small stellar core. Unfortunately, though, the weather here has taken a turn for the worse.

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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: SteveRosenow]
      #6220780 - 11/28/13 06:19 AM

This morning I observed Comet Lovejoy for the seventh time from my red zone backyard using Celestron Regal 8x42, Celestron Ultima 10x50, and Burgess Optical 15x70 binoculars. Conditions were poor. It was windy and cold and the sky was a patchwork of rapidly moving clouds.

The fifth-magnitude comet was visible through the 8x42s but was best seen through the 15x70s. It was positioned about seven degrees southeast of the second-magnitude B3 V star Alkaid (Eta Ursae Majoris), the easternmost star in the handle of the Big Dipper, as illustrated in the current finder chart posted at http://media.skyandtelescope.com/documents/Comets_Ison_Lovejoy_LateNov.pdf

I also viewed the bright open clusters M44 and M35, the only deep-sky objects visible from my horizon-challenged patio enclosure at the time, with the 10x50s and 15x70s.

Dave Mitsky


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aa6ww
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Reged: 10/23/11

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6222792 - 11/29/13 03:59 AM

Now that ISON is toast, it looks like Lovejoy will be our focus now, for upcoming comets. ISON was very fun to watch come into view, and watch even as it was observable in the early morning. I'm glad i spent so much time observing it, but lovejoy is definitely no slouch!!

...Ralph


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qianniu
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6222795 - 11/29/13 04:04 AM

Do you not know that ISON likely survived the "toast" and the entire world is waiting to see what show it will put up there. This is much fun!

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aa6ww
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: qianniu]
      #6222851 - 11/29/13 05:36 AM

I read a report from CNN that part of it may have survived an hr or so ago. I doubt the entire world is waiting, or even knows what we are talking about. The astronomical world absolutely.

I agree though, its definitely some fun times!!

...Ralph


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LivingNDixie
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: aa6ww]
      #6223353 - 11/29/13 12:46 PM

Spaceweather.com is saying that it could be a naked eye object on Dec or Dec 3. Either way if the skies are clear I will be out with 10X50s in hand.

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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: LivingNDixie]
      #6223601 - 11/29/13 03:05 PM

This morning I observed Comet Lovejoy again using 15x70 binocs. This was my first clear opportunity in about a week or so. Observed for 25-30 minutes until the wind and cold sent me back inside.

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djeber2
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6226536 - 12/01/13 08:44 AM

I observed Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) again this morning from my suburban backyard at approximately 5:50 a.m. EST (10:50 UT) using 15x70 binoculars hand held. This was my 7th or 8th observation of this comet.

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Jim T
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Reged: 12/15/10

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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: djeber2]
      #6226569 - 12/01/13 09:15 AM Attachment (34 downloads)

Lovejoy is still putting on a very nice show, as my sketch from this morning shows. The departure of the Moon from AM skies will make it sweeter.

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Aquarellia
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Reged: 10/27/12

Loc: Provence, France
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Jim T]
      #6226836 - 12/01/13 11:40 AM Attachment (20 downloads)

Oh yes Jim, a very nice show !
I like the atmosphere of you small sketch.
It was the 8th observation I made of Lovejoy, it's always a gift!
Here join my last sketch, this morning it was the first time that I can detect some (very light) difference in color between the tail and the coma and also the first time that I can see details in the coma, around the nucleus.
- Left the binocular view (10x50) a tail of around 3°
- Right a refractor 102/1000 view with 10, 26 and 40mm EP
Clear sky to you all !


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6227185 - 12/01/13 02:09 PM Attachment (28 downloads)

Jim T and Michel--very nice observational sketches.

I too got up early this morning to catch this view of Comet Lovejoy. Skies were dark and clear with no moonlight so I was able to see the comet with the unaided eye directly once the comet cleared the trees to my NE. It was an easy find ~1.5° NW of Beta Bootis with binoculars. I was glad it wasn't further south near Spica because the zodiacal light was very bright around there.

I looked at Lovejoy with my 12x36 binoculars and at 15x with the 108mm reflector before I made the sketch. I did a quick and dirty mag estimate with the 12x36's using the defocused star method and nearby 40 Bootis (mag 5.6) as the comp star. Lovejoy was significantly brighter than 40 Bootis.

The coma was well condensed and the tail was visible at low power for over 3° flowing to the NW. It appeared to have a greenish hue at 12x and 15x which went away at 29x. The tail was much brighter closer to the coma and dropped of in an uneven manner with the eastern side persisting a little farther.

This is a pleasing comet to view because of its "classic" appearance with head and tail rather than a fuzzy blob.

Lovejoy appeared to travel ~10 arcmins to the NE during the half hour I was sketching it. While I was observing, 4 different satellites went through the FOV of the binoculars or the reflector including a pair in the binocular FOV that actually crossed paths. Good thing they were at different altitudes.

Conditions were cold--20°F/-7°C--which added a level of difficulty to the exercise since I needed to work fast. As soon as twilight and the thin crescent Moon began to arrive, detail immediately started to wash out but I was done with the sketch by then.

This is my second view and first sketch of Comet Lovejoy--hope I get to see it some more.

Edited by Special Ed (12/02/13 10:38 AM)


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LivingNDixie
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6228258 - 12/02/13 12:45 AM

I caught a view of Lovejoy in my 10in SCT on Saturday morning. Beautiful, very bright. I didn't do a sketch however This comet is sure putting on a show.

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Dave Mitsky
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: LivingNDixie]
      #6228359 - 12/02/13 03:17 AM

I saw Comet Lovejoy again on Saturday morning. Since I can no longer observe it from my backyard, I had to walk a few hundred feet down the street armed with Celestron Ultima 10x50s. The transparency was poor. I could discern the comet's coma but just barely.

Dave Mitsky


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stevecoe
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations ONLY! new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #6228551 - 12/02/13 08:17 AM

I agree with Special Ed that the classic comet appearance was nice to see. This was with an ED 80 and a 20mm eyepiece, the tail just made it across the entire field of view. Nice green color in and around the coma. It was just naked eye near Beta Bootis. This is from a dark location about 100 miles from Phoenix.

Clear skies to us all;
Steve Coe


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strdst
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: stevecoe]
      #6239430 - 12/07/13 04:36 PM

Is there a star chart with the Lovejoy path available through December? I finally have a shot with a clear morning predicted (0 f.) and I am hoping to find the comet fast as I'm not real big on, nor well prepared for cold temps. I'll be much more inclined to set up a telescope if I have a pretty good idea of where to look. Last I heard it was in Bootes and bookin' fast. The charts I've seen were for Oct. and Nov. A link to something more current would be much appreciated!

Thank you

other keith


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goodricke1
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Loc: Ireland
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: strdst]
      #6239705 - 12/07/13 06:59 PM

Quote:

Is there a star chart with the Lovejoy path available through December?




Well here's one for the next few days...

http://freestarcharts.com/index.php/latest-bright-comets/19-news-and-current-...


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: goodricke1]
      #6239809 - 12/07/13 08:27 PM

Here's a chart for Lovejoy through December:

http://cometchasing.skyhound.com/comets/2013_R1.pdf


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strdst
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6240051 - 12/07/13 11:36 PM

goodricke 1 and Special Ed...

Thank you both!


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hottr6
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6240379 - 12/08/13 08:29 AM

I caught Lovejoy this morning 90-60 mins before sunrise in 7x50 binos and 108mm f/4 Newt at 22x. Head is well formed, and the tail extends at least 1 degree. I sensed a bluish-green color. I was fussing too much with gear to see if I could catch it with the naked eye. Lovejoy is a lovely sight, and nice to compare with nearby M13.

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Tonk
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: hottr6]
      #6240432 - 12/08/13 09:27 AM

Up here at 54 north I've been able to observe Lovejoy for 3 hours after sunset and then again for 3 hours in the morning before twlight - its still get fairly high up. Technically it was circumpolar until few dayas ago but it skirts very very low to the horizon when directly north.

Just nice to have two big bites per night.


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Phillip Creed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Tonk]
      #6248402 - 12/12/13 07:12 AM

**FINALLY** saw C/2013 R1 Lovejoy after weeks and weeks of cold, never-ending cloudiness rolling off of Lake Erie, all the while seeing all the pictures on Spaceweather.com, not...that...I'm...**BITTER** or anything.

I didn't have access to the darker skies I would have preferred to have off to my south. So the best I could do was find a spot that didn't have much towards the ENE:

Dec. 12.45 UTC, m1 = 5.3, Dia = 8', DC = 7, Tail = 1.2-deg in PA 345 w/15x70 binoculars.

Location: Deer Creek Resevoir, about 5 miles north of Alliance, OH.

First 30' of the tail has high-surface brightness, and would probably have been visible under suburban skies.

Clear Skies,
Phil


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Special Ed
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Phillip Creed]
      #6250483 - 12/13/13 09:05 AM

Glad you got to see Lovejoy, Phillip.

I made my third observation of the comet this morning using my 12x36 image stabilized binoculars. I had planned to use the scope, too, but the lock on the door to my observatory was frozen and with the start of twilight not far off I didn't want to take the time it would require to thaw it out.

Conditions were clear and cold--seeing 4/10 Pickering; transparency 5/6; no moon; temperature 17°F (-8°C). The comet's altitude was 26° at the time of my observation.

Lovejoy was an easy find with the binoculars ~6° south of M13 and ~2° SW of Zeta Herc. The tail extended ~2.5° at a PA of ~345° and I had a hint of more tail trailing out another degree or so.

I compared the comet's brightness to M13 (mag 5.7), Xi Coronae Borealis (mag 4.8), and Upsilon Coronae Borealis (mag 5.8) using the defocused star method. It appeared a little brighter than M13 to me and the coma appeared close to the size of M13. Lovejoy has dimmed since my last observation a couple of weeks ago. I could not detect it with the unaided eye (but I don't have very good eyes).

13 Dec. 2013 1105 UT m1= 5.4 DC= 7 Dia= ~15-20 arcmins

Forgot to mention I saw two Geminids in the area of the Keystone and watched a northbound satellite pass right by Lovejoy--all inside of 10 minutes.

Edited by Special Ed (12/13/13 01:02 PM)


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krp
Vendor. DarkSiteFinder.com


Reged: 11/10/10

Loc: Central Illinois
Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6258965 - 12/17/13 09:01 PM

According to Spaceweather.com the tail is now 20 degrees long and will grow even longer after perihelion. What are the chances of the brightness increasing as well? Are there any updated light curve predictions?

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Tonk
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: krp]
      #6259006 - 12/17/13 09:27 PM

Brighteness is now beginning to decreasing as the comet's distance from earth grows

Scroll to bottom for mag trend graph

http://aerith.net/comet/catalog/2013R1/2013R1.html


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Larry F
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Re: ISON, ENCKE, and LOVEJOY Visual Observations O new [Re: Tonk]
      #6259222 - 12/17/13 11:24 PM

Has anybody noticed that the Minor Planet Center is still listing C/2012 S1 (ISON) as being at mag 6.1? I think they programmed the ephemeris into their system long ago and all the updates are automatic.

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