Tag Archives: Comets

Saying Goodbye to Comet Lovejoy

Finder chart showing Comet Lovejoy's position on March 8, 2015. Courtesy of Heavens-Above.com

Finder chart showing Comet Lovejoy’s position on March 8, 2015. Courtesy of Heavens-Above.com

Comet Lovejoy (official designation, C/2014 Q2) is hanging around longer than anticipated but even so my last views of the comet seem sure to come sometime this week. I was out tonight viewing the comet, which has faded to around magnitude 6, and while I could spot it in 8×40 binoculars it took much more effort than it did two weeks ago.

Not only is the brightness fading but its position is becoming less favorable. Cassiopeia is sinking ever lower in the Northern sky putting the comet down in the proverbial atmospheric muck. What’s more is that my backyard isn’t ideal for observing in this direction. I have trees back there. Still, this is one instance where the switch to EDT actually helps, giving me an extra hour to get home and have a shot at observing the comet before it drops below the tree line.

Read more…