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 Post subject: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:39 am 
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I've just finished opening my Christmas presents from the Bradford Robotic Telescope - my first views of this new comet...
In the early hours of Christmas morning, it took a couple of exposures which I'd ordered, using both the Galaxy and Cluster Cameras:
Attachment:
File comment: Comet Lovejoy on 25-Dec. 3x 120-sec using R, G & B filters with Cluster Camera (180mm lens)
lovejoy_25Dec_Clu.png
lovejoy_25Dec_Clu.png [ 511.81 KiB | Viewed 6597 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: Comet Lovejoy on 25-Dec. 120-sec with unfiltered Galaxy Camera
lovejoy_25Dec_Gal.png
lovejoy_25Dec_Gal.png [ 258.67 KiB | Viewed 6597 times ]

This comet should be visible from our latitude from later this week, low down in the southern sky - look just SW of Orion.


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2014 3:20 pm 
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I've managed to get a better view of the comet's tail by registering and adding all the BRT ClusterCam data from last night (nine frames, through the three coloured filters) stretching and then making a "negative":
Attachment:
File comment: Stack of nine ClusterCam frames taken over two hours
lj_28Dec_inv.png
lj_28Dec_inv.png [ 374.66 KiB | Viewed 6578 times ]
(Two sets of the RGB images were taken two hours after the first, so all the stars appear twice in the stack)


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy - a twist in the tail
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 3:41 pm 
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I've made an animation of three of this week's images, to show how the tail has been changing from night to night:
Attachment:
File comment: Comet C/2014 Q2 - animation of ClusterCam images from three nights in December.
lj_tail1.gif
lj_tail1.gif [ 845.59 KiB | Viewed 6568 times ]
The images are aligned with "North at the top" in each case, so the tail also appears to rotate with repsect to the Earth.


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2014 11:11 pm 
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I've just managed to spot the comet for myself - using 15x70 binoculars. It was in the same field as Epsilon Leporis.
It's very low in the sky at the moment, yet I could still make it out despite the bright moonlight and the orange streetlamp glow, so it must be quite bright - perhaps 4th magnitude?


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Wed Dec 31, 2014 12:18 pm 
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I was on NSN the other night watching a guy in Brazil doing a live broadcast of the comet, I'd like to have a go at it when I get the chance.


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2015 2:59 pm 
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Despite the scattered light from the full Moon, I could see the comet very clearly with my binoculars last night. It was more than 20 degrees above the horizon by 10:30pm, and so clearer of the streetlamp haze.
I also had a go at imaging it, but in order to reach that part of the sky, I had to set up my 'scope much further down the garden than usual, and then find my way around the "RA limits" menu on my CG5 AGT mount to persuade it to point just West of the meridian!
But I did finally manage to capture 27 minutes worth, before it started to set behind next-door's roof:
Attachment:
File comment: Comet Lovejoy from Bolton on 3-Jan. 27x 60-sec using Atik16IC on StarWave 80ED at f/4.6
2014Q2_3Jan.png
2014Q2_3Jan.png [ 151.87 KiB | Viewed 6052 times ]
The gap in the star-trails is when I stopped to re-centre the comet on the camera's sensor.

I can see that I'm going to need a much wider field of view to catch any of the tail too, so next time I'll use one of my Pentax lenses instead of a telescope...


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:20 pm 
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Had a go myself but with the mix of a bright moon and a slight fog haze I was unable to collect enough detail to reveal the tail. But it also disappeared behind a tree when the fog haze did eventually go away :roll:

http://www.boltonastro.co.uk/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=1483&fullsize=1

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I choose to image with an 11" SCT Celestron in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard......


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 2:55 pm 
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Even though the clouds intervened in Bolton, last night I managed to collect some more images of the comet from the BRT Cluster Camera on Tenerife:
Attachment:
File comment: Comet Lovejoy on 6-Jan. 3x 60-sec + 6x 180-sec through R, G & B filters.
lj_6jan.png
lj_6jan.png [ 587.2 KiB | Viewed 6011 times ]


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:13 pm 
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And this morning there were also some images taken by one of the MicroObservatory telescopes in the Arizonan desert:
Attachment:
File comment: Comet Lovejoy from MO telescope "Ben" in Arizona. 50+40+30+20-sec with 6" reflector.
lj_mo_7dec.png
lj_mo_7dec.png [ 143.46 KiB | Viewed 6010 times ]


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 Post subject: Re: Comet 2014 Q2 Lovejoy
PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 3:06 pm 
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If there are any gaps in the clouds tonight (Thu 8-Jan), this is where to point your binoculars to look for the comet - in the red circle South of The Pleiades and West of Orion:
Attachment:
File comment: Chart from Cartes du Ciel showing the comet's position at 8:30pm on 8-Jan
2014Q2_8jan.png
2014Q2_8jan.png [ 153.62 KiB | Viewed 5980 times ]
It will reach a maximum altitude of 36 degrees above the horizon just after 9pm, at which time it will appear due South.
Don't expect to see much of the tail from Bolton, but you should at least be able to make out the "fuzzy blob" of the comet's coma - I could see it very easily last Saturday despite the bright moonlight, and tonight the Moon doesn't rise until after 8pm.


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