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Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)

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4 years 2 months ago #108881 by Fermidox
Replied by Fermidox on topic Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)
Made an attempt at 4am this morning but, although I have a reasonable NE horizon, the background sky was too bright and the comet's elevation too low. Mag 3.4 Mothallah in Triangulum was visible, 3 degrees from the comet, but SWAN didn't show. Next week will be more favourable, clear skies permitting.

Finbarr.
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4 years 2 months ago #108886 by Until_then-Goodnight!
Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)
Hi Finbarr, 

Many thanks for the update. Would 3.4 mag be considered bright for a comet? 

Clear skies to you, 

Darren. 

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4 years 2 months ago #108890 by Fermidox
Replied by Fermidox on topic Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)
It is quite rare Darren, the last time we saw a comet that bright from these latitudes was one of the PanStarrs gang back in March 2013, although I estimated Wirtanen at lower-fourth magnitude in Dec 2018. I've seen a couple of widefield images on the British forums and they show a diffuse fuzz just above naked-eye visibility. Certainly nothing to write home about at this point, although still brighter than the vast majority of comets. Even if it does get to mag 3, that light is spread out over a wider distance than an equivalent star, and still won't be enough to get the public talking. For that you need a mag 1 or 2 comet with a visible tail, which you only get once per decade or so on average.

Finbarr.
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4 years 2 months ago #108898 by Until_then-Goodnight!
Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)
Hi Finbarr,

Very many thanks for your message. Interesting to think that it's seven years since a comet that bright was seen from these parts. It would be great to see SWAN brighten a bit more.

Clear skies,

Darren.
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4 years 2 months ago #108911 by Fermidox
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Well you need a dark background to see it on this image, but it's there alright, circled... SWAN has faded down to mag 7 and its best days appear already over. This was taken at 2.55am summer time with the sky beginning to lighten. Algol was a useful signpost just over a degree to the west. Next week the comet reaches perihelion and appears in evening skies but will be battling moonlight. So all in all, something of a fizzle -



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4 years 2 months ago #108914 by Until_then-Goodnight!
Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Comet C/2020 F8 (SWAN)
Hi Finbarr,

What a nice image you have shared with us. I can clearly see the comet on my PC. So, many thanks for staying up late to take the photo.

Clear skies,

Darren.
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