Sunday, 12 July 2020

OT: Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE

click to enlarge
The image above shows comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE, which is currently visible low on the northern horizon after sunset and before sunrise. From my 51 degree latitude, it is circumpolar, so visible all night, although very low in the sky. For the Northern hemipshere, this is probably the best comet since Hale-Bopp in 1997.

I took the image (or rather: images, as it is an image stack) last night around 00:58 UT (2:58 CEST) from Polderpark Cronesteyn on the outskirts of Leiden. It is a stack of 45 images of 0.6s exposure eacht, at ISO's 1600 and 4000, taken with a Canon EOS 80D + Samyang 2.0/135 mm on a fixed tripod (i.e. no tracking). The comet was only 8 degrees above the N-NE horizon at that time.

Apart from the bright bent yellowish dust tail, a hint of the straight, faint blue ion (gas) tail can be seen.

It was a very nice night (with owls calling), but a bit moist, with a carpet of low fog over the meadows. I had an USB dew lint and USB battery with me, and was glad I did. My glasses fogged over at times.

The comet is visible with the naked eye (even from my urban environment) with a few degrees of tail. It is impressive in 10 x 50 binoculars. the brightness is somewhere around magnitude +2.

The 2.0/135 mm Samyang turned out to be a superb lens for this comet, by the way. I am surprised by what I can achieve with it on this comet without a tracking mount.


Samuel said...

Great image, thanks for sharing. I will try to catch it from Utrecht either tonight or in the weekend. Hopefully, I will get a good picture of it.

Unknown Soldier said...


O           ^.^
 |< ° °          ^.^
/\     ° °                 ◦<o   ◦<o
                                   O\    O\

Matthew 13 [4] And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:

Revelation 13 [5] And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> !