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Comet C/2018 W2 (Africano)

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#1 jeanc

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Posted 30 August 2019 - 01:52 AM

Hello The comet is now slowly getting into the reach of binoculars. On August 29 he was around the 10m0 bright. The coma is now greater than 5 arc minutes, but the comet is only moderately condensed.
On the images no tail is visible. Image from August 29th at 2.20 UT with 8 "/2.0 RASA and CCD L-4x3 min filter green, Regards Michael Jäger

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  • 2018W2augst29sm.jpg

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#2 einarin

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Posted 30 August 2019 - 02:16 AM

Nice image. I must try this again.

You are using manual filter change, right ?


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#3 Stardust Dave

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Posted 30 August 2019 - 04:34 AM

I put 20" on Africano from a bortle 3 observing spot outside of town this AM , bright but small and oval shaped appearance .Best at 80X. Questionable tail seemed to be pointed W.

Quite nice- diffuse ,easy compared to my observation from home a few nights ago (in 13" )



#4 jeanc

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Posted 30 August 2019 - 05:24 AM

Yes i changed filter manual MJ



#5 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 12:14 PM

As a comparison M13 is 20 arc minutes. So this is 5+ arc minutes? Tried last night but clouds won. Hoping for Monday morning.

#6 Special Ed

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Posted 31 August 2019 - 12:35 PM

Nice image, Michael.  I've been admiring your images for several years now.  Glad to see you posting here on CN and welcome!  smile.gif 



#7 jeanc

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Posted 01 September 2019 - 03:18 AM

Thank you Ed



#8 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 02 September 2019 - 11:11 PM

What reference are y'all using for coordinates? I'm getting conflicting r.a. and dec numbers from different websites and apps.
Thank you!

#9 einarin

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 01:47 AM

I just download the elements to CdC from:
http://www.minorplan...RB/CometEls.txt



#10 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 03:08 AM

Finally found it using star charts. The skylive.com was not correct, neither was in-the-sky.org, neither was sky safari.
Using 8" refractor at 38x... coma was tight, stellar, closer to a 12th magnitude star, tail was wide, easier to see with binoviewer (50x) and shaped like a badminton birdie. Is moving very quickly.
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#11 makeitso

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 12:22 PM

Would I be able to see this from a city with a 4” refractor or a 6” sct? If I need dark sky or more aperture, I would have to travel. If I had a dob, maybe no travel, hmm…

 

Thanks, Jack



#12 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 01:23 PM

No. I was in a rural green zone.
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#13 starblue

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Posted 03 September 2019 - 02:46 PM

Welcome to Cloudy Nights! (OK, I see I'm 3 months late.) I always enjoy the photos you post over at spaceweather.com--they're always of excellent quality.



#14 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 12:43 AM

I've been observing C/2018 W2 (Africano) from the orange-zone Naylor Observatory using the 17" f/15 classical Cassegrain housed in the French Dome at 116, 170, 185, 216, and 259x.  The transparency is only so-so and the comet is quite difficult to see.  Fortunately, it's located in the area of some easily recognizable star patterns.  Jogging the telescope slightly made Comet Africano a bit easier to distinguish.  The best view has been at 216x.
 

https://www.heavens-...lt=170.0&tz=EST

 

Dave Mitsky

Attached Thumbnails

  • Comet Africano Chart September 4 UT.PNG

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#15 Special Ed

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 08:40 AM

I searched for C/2018 W2 (Africano) with the big CAT this morning (4 Sept.) starting around 0500 UT but was unable to detect it.  Skies were dark but transparency was so-so, 3-4/6.  I was using my widest field ep @ 71x.  I looked in the area shown in the chart that Dave posted above but I didn't see anything.  This was my first attempt--I'll try again.

 

I did notice a couple of meteors come shooting out of Perseus--must have been stragglers.


Edited by Special Ed, 04 September 2019 - 09:42 AM.


#16 Stardust Dave

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 10:54 AM

Ed what is your bortle zone approximately ?



#17 Special Ed

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 12:56 PM

Ed what is your bortle zone approximately ?

My SQM-L reading was 21.34.  A couple of hours later it was 21.50.



#18 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 01:14 PM

During the time I viewed the comet, it passed closer and closer to the fairly bright 8th-magnitude field star shown in the Heavens Above finder chart. Comet Africano is currently on the other side of that star.

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  • Comet Africano September 4 afternoon.PNG


#19 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 01:27 PM

Here's where the comet will be on Thursday morning at 2:30 a.m. EDT (6:30 UT).

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  • Comet Africano September 5.PNG


#20 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 01:29 PM

Here's the section on comets from the September Celestial Calendar.

 

During September, Comet C/2018 W2 (Africano) travels through Perseus, Andromeda, and Pegasus, and enters Pisces. It is at perihelion on September 5th and reaches a maximum brightness of approximately ninth magnitude on September 25th. On September 28th, the rapidly moving comet passes very close to the eleventh-magnitude galaxy NGC 7743 in southern Pegasus. Browse http://cometchasing.skyhound.com/ and http://www.aerith.ne...t/future-n.html for further information on comets visible this month. Other sources of information include https://theskylive.com/comets and http://www.shopplaza...mets/comets.htm and http://britastro.org...arts_comet.html


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#21 Zorbathegeek

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 06:22 PM

I'm not convinced that this comet is going to come into the range of binoculars - even 20x80's. It's apparent magnitude seems to have stalled around 10.2 - 10.5 over the past week and a half. I think 8.5 at closest approach is now looking a bit optimistic. Still holding out hope though. Maybe all those recent magnitude estimates to COBS are under-evaluating?

 

Ray.


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#22 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 06:23 PM

Thanks Dave

#23 39.1N84.5W

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Posted 04 September 2019 - 06:36 PM

Why do COBS and JPL list different magnitude? Observed 10.6 and Estimated 12.5. Africano did not remind me of anything in the 10th magnitude range... but I'm an amateur.

#24 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 07 September 2019 - 03:00 PM

I observed Comet Africano again the next night using the 17" classical Cassegrain.  It was a bit easier to see, but was still a rather difficult target, with the best view occurring at 170x.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Comet Africano September 5 Observed.PNG

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#25 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 07 September 2019 - 03:23 PM

I was at the Naylor Observatory again last night.  I observed the comet a bit earlier than during my previous two sightings, since a solid wall of clouds was moving in from the west.  This time the best view of Comet Africano was at 185x.  It was not easy to see. 

Attached Thumbnails

  • Comet Africano September 7.PNG

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