Friday, November 15, 2013

Looking for the Comet Ison

Looking east with the bright object being Spica
If you have been following the nose about the events in the sky, Comet ISON is been getting brighter as it plunges down toward the sun before it makes its turn away from the sun to start leaving our solar system. This morning I visited Gooseberry and arrived around 5 AM, with the skies absolutely clear. In order to find the comet, you first had to locate the star Spica, in the constellation Virgo. First find the Big Dipper and follow its handle down through the star Arcturus and then over to Spica. On November 17, ISON should be in the same binocular field as Spica.

We were able to locate the comet with binoculars, but did not capture it in the camera. The reason for this is we were a little late in arriving so we got light not only from New Bedford but also from Astronomical and Nautical Dawn. My plan is to follow the weather forecast and on the next clear night arrived the least one to one and a half hours earlier and hopefully capture Comet ISON.

Besides looking for the comet, don't miss what is in the rest of the sky. Looking West, the constellation Orion is shining bright and nearby is Jupiter.

Looking west O'Brien is on the right and Jupiter is on the left