Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) may have broken up.
CNN just did a segment on the comet.
There's live coverage at https://plus.google.com/events/c8t7i5dbr1k50oq89giloiqe8rc
Sic itur ad astra!
Chance favors the prepared mind.
A man is a small thing, and the night is very large and full of wonders.
It looks increasingly doubtful that Comet ISON survived perihelion.
It went in, but nothing seems to have come out again. Oh well.
Location: North West Devon, UK
Celestron Nexstar8i (8" SCT).
Celestron Skymaster binoculars 15x70
Other:0.63 & 0.33 correctors. X2 & X4 barlow.
Imagers: Meade DSI & Celestron NexImage. Canon EOS 550D
It seems that the smudge at about "10 o'clock" is all that is left of Comet ISON.
In the special Comet ISON supplement, there was mention of trying to view/photograph ISON at perihelion by shielding the sun carefully. I attempting this today, and was able to track a large bright object which matched the location predicted real-time by my Sky Safari app pretty dead-on. I couldn't see anything with the naked eye, but by shooting with a very small aperture and high speed, I was able to record perihelion (I think!). Anyway, I am really enjoyed that special supplement, and it was utilized heavily these last few weeks.
The latest SOHO images show something coming out the other side!
Don't let the ISON hype turn you away from comet Lovejoy; when the air went dry a couple nights ago I could easily see it from within my brightly lit city. A 30mm finder gave mere detection but 50mm binocs showed it as easily as M13 or M31. Any scope will show it well. It's in the northeast before dawn, a good finder chart is in Sky&Telescope's page about ISON, which prudently provides another comet to view.
TS 8x40 Wildlife, 10x50 Marine - Fujinon 16x70 - TS 80mm triplet, 6x30 finder, EQ-3 mount, TS 2" 99% diagonal - Celestron C5+ and 6x30 finder, DIY tripod - 5" Bahtinov - 12" GSO dob, 8x50 finder - Hyperion 24,13,10mm 68° - TS Expanse 17mm 70° - SW 7mm Panorama 82° - Ultima 2x barlow - Astronomik UHC-E filter - Baader O-III - Astro Solar 5" & 80mm filters - Sky Atlas 2000 - Rükl's Moon Atlas - Canon 400D - 5mW green laser
Yes, it looks llike nothing but scattered dust coming 'round the bend. This is not the first time a comet has performed unexpectely and it shall not be the last. At least it went out in a blaze of glory.
A nebula in the eyepiece is worth two in the Atlas.
Karl Battams of NASA just tweeted that a portion of ISON's nucleus did in fact survive the perihelion.
Here are some in-depth thoughts that Karl Battams posted on Twitter:
"The problem with quotes on the internet is that it is hard to determine whether they are genuine" Abraham Lincoln
Dobsonian, 72mm Astro-Tech ED refractor, a bunch of eyepieces, a couple of filters, a DSLR and german equatorial mount, binoculars
The latest images suggest that from our point of view ISON sort of 'extinguished' as it passed the sun, but it is now 're-igniting'! The tail is now turning as expected. Whatever else happens the experts on comets are going to have to come up with some modified ideas.
There was no chance of me observing the comet this morning due to cloud but it is forecast clear this evening. I'm certainly going to look after sunset, although it is still very near the Sun, and no sign of it being bright.
Aratus, I completely agree. i don't think we understand comets to the degree we think.
AratusThere was no chance of me observing the comet this morning due to cloud but it is forecast clear this evening. I'm certainly going to look after sunset, although it is still very near the Sun, and no sign of it being bright.
Still cloudy here in Bristol though the forcast said it would clear towards the afternoon's end. Only an hour or less till Sundown and the sky is grey.
I was hoping to get my scope out and all this evening. Good luck and clear skies Aratus.
It clouded over here too. There is some clear sky, but not in the south west. I was hoping for a clearance, but a peek at the satellite picture shows there is little chance of that. We needed to be on the Eastern side of the country. Not that I think there was much chance of seeing anything. IF it had been super bright then there was a chance of a tail sticking up above the horizon. On its recent form that was unlikely. What it is doing now is anyone's guess.
EDIT: There were a few gaps in the cloud, but I saw no comet's tail. Chocky the cat climbed on her tree stump, shook her head and went back indoors. I joined her a little later. The forecast for tomorrow evening is 'clear skies', if I choose to believe it. ISON will be a better placed evening object as time goes on, but all things being equal, it will be getting dimmer quite rapidly.
It will be getting much higher in the sky in the morning.
I can still see it on the SOHO LASCO C3 image. Clearly something has survived. It's tail apears more diffuse now. It may perhaps have two tails.
That's an interesting image. Unless there is some aspect of that instrument I don't know about then ISON is a fraction of the brightness predicted. 1st Magnitude Antares is bright enough to produce the horizontal saturation spike, but the comet isn't. If it really is less than 1st magnitude now, it will be a poor show later on. At the time that image was taken, the magnitude should have been zero on recent estimates. Even that was less than the earlier predictions.
Make up your mind.
I've just seen a LASCO C3 photometric estimate of magnitude +3 for the comet.
If that estimate is correct, and follows the usual curve, then the comet will be well below naked eye magnitude when it can be seen a dark sky.I choose 'fizzle', from my personal perspective, although the comet will be remembered.
Some additional links that are apropos:
Things do not look very promising.
November 29, 10:30 p.m. EST: A fading ghost. At 19:54 UT Filip Fratev (Bulgarian Acadamy of Sciences) wrote, "ISON [has] started to fade.... [In] the last four hours it faded by more than 2 magnitudes and obviously is less bright... I estimated the comet to be between 2.6 and 3.1 magnitude now."
Four hours later Karl Battams of the Comet ISON Observing Campaign tweeted, "We can't tell if #ISON is in one piece or many. It's about mag 5 now and fading."
That's much fainter than the revised IAU magnitude figure for today's UT date.
Unfortunately, Comet ISON, if there's anything remaining of the nucleus, will still be very low in the east at dawn for the first week of December.
Will it be naked eye visible? When? How bright?
This is definitely the toughest question but also the most frequent. We still don't know if it will be naked eye but based on its current brightness in the LASCO images - which is around magnitude +5 and fading - it does seem unlikely that there will be much to see in the night sky. I suspect that some of the outstanding astrophotographers around the world will be able to get something, but I doubt it will be as spectacular as before perihelion. I hope I'm wrong though.
Here's another source of information on the comet:
For this one it looks like a case of go out an see for yourself. It may not be clear here until Wednesday so... we still wait.
It's just at the edge of the field of view for the LASCO C3 detector. Only a faint v-shaped smudge remains, like a ghost of its former self.
There's a composite image at http://spaceweathergallery.com/indiv_upload.php?upload_id=90516&PHPSESSID=4c2lf1p9e6ujsk45fp3a62bkb4 that seems to tell the story.
There's an interesting comparison of C/2012 S1 (ISON) and C/2011 W3 (Lovejoy) posted at http://www.spaceweatherlive.com/en/comet-ison
In memorium of the Great Hype of 2013:
In a more serious vein, there's a fine montage of images by Damian Peach posted at http://www.damianpeach.com/deepsky/c2012_s1_sep_nov13.jpg
As of Dec. 2nd, the cloud of debris is no brighter than a star of approximately 8th magnitude. Experienced astrophotographers might be able to capture the comet's fading "ghost" in the pre-dawn sky of early December, but a naked-eye spectacle is out of the question.
Here's another one on the humorous side.
S & T calls Comet ISON out.
As a well-known amateur astronomer friend of mine said after ISON's perihelion disruption, "the term "Great Comet" should be strictly "performance based," and never applied to a newly discovered comet, no matter how some might imagine its potential".
There's more on the ghost of ISON at http://spaceweather.com/ (Friday).
There's no sign of Comet ISON in the image posted at http://spaceweathergallery.com/indiv_upload.php?upload_id=91066
For more, see http://spaceweather.com/ (Tuesday).
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