Best Observing places for Comet Ison

1 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    September, 2013
Best Observing places for Comet Ison
Posted by FlyingWildcat on Saturday, September 28, 2013 12:52 PM

After having just read the November issue of Astronomy Mag., the article about Ison seemed to state that Nov. 24th would be the last date to observe Ison before Twilight begins (for those living North of 35 Lat.).  Nothing was mentioned regarding Longitude.  I am an amature observer and photographer, so I hope this won't seem like a silly question to the pros.  QUESTIONS:  1.  I live in Springfield, MO.  Would it make any difference to observe further West where the twilight begins later, or is it simply a matter of the proximity of Ison to the Sun, regardless of Longitude?  2.  Second Question: Does anyone have any suggestions for some fabulous observing locations for my general area in the Midwest, or the US in general, if willing to travel?  3.  Last Question: Will Comet Ison be visible to photograph at any time with the Milky Way as a background, or perhaps in the same photo using a wide angle camera lens rather than my telescope?  Thanks to everyone.

  • Member since
    March, 2013
Posted by BrooksObs on Tuesday, October 01, 2013 9:33 AM

Regarding your questions:

1. No, an observer's longitude within a general given region will not matter. The comet's visibility is governed by its proximity to the Sun.

2. Best observing sites would favor the American Southwest, where the probability of clear skies is highest and light pollution less thanmost other places. The end of November and early December also often sees generally unsettled weather conditions across much of the remaining regions in the U.S., particularly the Northwest and Eastern sections.

3. No, before the comet disappears into the morning twilight late in November the Milky Way is situated within the twilight. During early December once the comet has reappeared, it will be rapidly moving up and away from any of the brighter portions of the Milky Way, which will still be situated very low in the sky and largely lost in the morning twilight. The same general situation prevails in the evenings after sunset.




Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.



Receive news, sky-event information, observing tips, and more from Astronomy's weekly email newsletter.

Find us on Facebook