The Half-Astrophysicist Blog

More On Comet Lovejoy

I went out again last night (Saturday, December 27th) and did some more with Comet Lovejoy. I was out a little later so the Moon was very low and even set while I was observing. The comet was again an easy naked eye object and very nice through 8×42 binoculars. I set up my trusty Canon 60D and iOptron Skytracker to take some more photos.

I took a bunch of 30 second exposures…hope to go back and stack them. Anyway, I just want to post this one since a plane flew right by the comet during one of them and I thought that was kind of fun.


Here is a longer 120 second exposure that brings out the tail. The small globular cluster M79 is to the upper right of the comet.

IMG_6899Finally, I put the 35mm lens on my camera and did a 30 second exposure so you can see where the comet is in the bigger picture.

IMG_6925I went out tonight just outside my townhome (not to Saguaro National Park). The Moon is brighter and I have more light pollution here. I was not able to pic out the comet naked eye from here but it was easy in binoculars. Comets are notoriously fickle but it is forecast to brighten in the couple of weeks and I hope it gets to naked eye visibility from here. It is also climbing higher in the sky which should help, especially for those farther north (it tops out around 30 degrees above the horizon in Tucson right now, take one degree off that for every degree farther north you are!)

For better and for worse, I travel a lot the next couple of weeks and am trying to figure out how much equipment I can take with me to keep track of this comet on my trip!




December 29, 2014 - Posted by | Astrophotography, Comet Lovejoy


  1. Nearly every day this month has been overcast. Then the sky cleared over the weekend but temps. were in the low 20’s making it a challenge to sit outside with camera and laptop. Now the Moon is waxing in the evening skies and suddenly the night sky is clear. I Cannot win!!

    Comment by Bob Riddle | December 29, 2014 | Reply

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    Pingback by Allgemeines Live-Blog ab dem 28. Dez. 2014 | Skyweek Zwei Punkt Null | December 30, 2014 | Reply

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