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Get out and...

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by Pete, 29 Oct 2007.

  1. Pete

    Pete Guest

    ...see that comet everyone! If you've got clear skies. It's the best show we've had since Hale-Bopp in 1997. Called 17P/Holmes, you can find it high up in the north-east not far from Alpha Persei (go down from the 'W' of Cassiopeia). Even without a tail (it looks like a fuzzy star to the naked eye) it's a splendid sight in binoculars even in the moonlight. This is definitely one not to be missed.
     
  2. longers

    longers Veteran

    Cloudy here.xx(

    Is it for tonight only?
     
  3. marinyork

    marinyork Resting in suspended Animation

    Location:
    Logopolis
    Clear skies in Sheffield, yeah right!
     
  4. Dayvo

    Dayvo Just passin' through

    What's it like in York, then? xx(

    Pissing down here!
    I'm waiting for a clear night and the Northern Lights, the city's observatory is only 200 yards away.
     
  5. snorri

    snorri Legendary Member

    The sky is clear of cloud, but I cannot see anything unusual, and it's too cold to hang around out there. Brrrrr:sad:
     
  6. Graham O

    Graham O New Member

    Cloudy and wet in North Wales, so no joy here. Forgot to have a look for it last night. But as I currently borrowed a friends telescope, I'm itching to give it a try.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Pete

    Pete Guest

    Hopefully for several days yet. Normally a very faint periodic comet, this time around it's been getting brighter all the time, but how long that will continue, who knows? Also astronomers are currently debating whether it'll grow a tail.

    Here's roughly where to find it at the moment. Note the 'W' of Cassi which is almost overhead at the moment, and the moon just risen.
    [​IMG]
    Naked eye, it does look rather star-like, use binoculars to get the best view.
     
  8. snorri

    snorri Legendary Member

    Pete, I have tried again with more warm clothing on, but still no joy.xx(
    It is a beautifully clear night and I am sure if I had an expert standing beside me he would soon direct me to P19/Holmes. Binocs and telescope just cause me further confusion by revealing lots of other stars.
     
  9. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Location:
    Brighton
    N is not good for me due to light pollution but I'm off to give it a go
     
  10. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Location:
    Brighton
    Got it! It apppears as a large soft focus star. Thanks for the tip, Pete.
     
  11. I'll go with this too - I have been outside for about half an hour and the amount of stars to be seen is amazing...even allowing for the airport pollution. It makes 100km on a bike seem insignificant when looking that far away and just goes to show that there are some unspoilt views to be had. Might be cold tomorrow though...xx(
     
  12. Fnaar

    Fnaar Smutmaster General

    Location:
    Thumberland
    Could it be...

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Steve Austin

    Steve Austin The Marmalade Kid

    Location:
    Mlehworld
    looked really cool. Loads bigger than anything else in the sky, even to the naked eye.
     
  14. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Location:
    York, UK
    Uh oh. You know what this means don't you? All that worrying over climate change and world terrorism and it turns out we're going to be wiped out by a comet. Unless they can get Bruce Willis up there sharpish....

    I'll pass this on to my bro-in-law, although I expect he knows about it already...
     
  15. OP
    OP
    Pete

    Pete Guest

    Errr... my wife asked just about the same question when I showed it her ("will it hit us?"). Sorry to disappoint all you folks (especially those with a Bruce-Willis-fetish) but this one won't come anywhere near the Earth, its orbit never comes inside the orbit of Mars. It actually orbits the Sun once every seven years, but has never shown up like this before, since its discovery in 1892.

    Regarding finding this object - and I admit that without a tail it does look a bit star-like with the naked eye - I confess to having an advantage here in that I know my way around the night sky better than Mr/Ms Average I suppose! So it needed only a quick glance, yesterday evening after sunset, at the place in the sky where I knew the comet would be somewhere about. And I instantly saw 'something wrong' with constellation Perseus - an extra 'star' that shouldn't be there, and the rest was easy for me. For those who don't have this faculty and have had difficulty finding it - all I can say is, sweep the sky with binoculars in the area indicated (the moon of course will be later rising as the week advances), until you have it. Once you have it, it will be obvious. Good luck!