Look to the west

johnboy 15 January 2007 13

TVNZ informs us that the western sky at sunset is going to be adorned by the McNaught comet!

it is certainly the brightest comet in our skies for the last 40 years and will possibly be the brightest in a century.

Time and date reckons that sunset will be at 8.21pm.

C’mon photo-nerds, get me a picture of that comet over the Canberra skyline!

Wikipedia informs us that the comet is named after Robert H. McNaught who found it right here at the ANU.

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13 Responses to Look to the west
Al Al 8:49 am 16 Jan 07

Few, 20, what’s the diff Nik? Time flies…

Halley’s was a largish fuzzball. The other one more recently – at least you could see the tail on it.

As for today’s? Yawn. Reddish star out early on the horizon. Went down before anything worthwhile could be seen. Kept the kids up late just to disappoint them. Guess the older one was expecting something like a shooting star…

Now the ISS when the shuttle is docked to it – that is something to watch – brightest thing next to a full moon you’ll ever see in the night sky. Goes real fast.

Check out: http://heavens-above.com/

Jey Jey 8:27 am 16 Jan 07

Xanthomyza, I think Drewster was referring to Halley’s Comet.

Xanthomyza Xanthomyza 8:22 am 16 Jan 07

Drewster, it was only discovered last year. Rob McNaught works at Siding Spring in the Warrumbungles, which is an ANU facility. I met him up there once, about five years ago.

The ABC online had this

johnboy johnboy 6:04 pm 15 Jan 07

The thing about halley’s comet is it comes back every 76 years, other comets take an awful lot longer, or just burn up on a single pass.

The Drewster The Drewster 6:03 pm 15 Jan 07

Did it still look like a blue smudge?

Nik_the_Pig Nik_the_Pig 5:56 pm 15 Jan 07

A few years back Al?? Halley’s comet last came by in 1986! I was 11! My dad took me out to some of the paddocks north of the suburbs away from the city lights(where dunlop now stands) and we we had a look at it through his telescope. ’twas cool.

The Drewster The Drewster 5:52 pm 15 Jan 07

Ok. Sounds good. But why has no one ever heard of it if it’s better than Halley’s comment? Which by the way was a major disappointment when I was a kid. I had myself built up to see a comet roaring by with full sound and wind effects. All we saw was a blue smudge..

Al Al 5:23 pm 15 Jan 07

That is SOO much better than the paltry Halley’s that I dragged myself out of bed at 3am for a few years back. Amazing picture.
So I guess the good ol’ Canberra Times got it wrong then…who would have thought?

VYBerlinaV8_now with_added_grunt VYBerlinaV8_now with_added_grunt 4:52 pm 15 Jan 07


Try this

Al Al 4:48 pm 15 Jan 07

I read over the weekend that it was only visible in the northern hemisphere and wouldn’t come around our way for a few weeks…

VYBerlinaV8_now with_added_grunt VYBerlinaV8_now with_added_grunt 4:03 pm 15 Jan 07

So what time is best for seeing it then? 9.00pm or thereabouts?

S4anta S4anta 3:36 pm 15 Jan 07

try these constellation maps if you get lost outside your own home

S4anta S4anta 3:32 pm 15 Jan 07

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