Friday, May 23, 2008

Comet C/2007 W1 (Boattini)

Comet C/2007 W1 (Boattini) has brightened enough to see with binoculars and, if you're lucky, with naked eyes.
Comet C/2007 W1 (Boattini) continues to brighten faster than predicted, and has now reached about 6th magnitude. That's bright enough that you can see it without optical aid under excellent conditions, and it should be a relatively easy target through binoculars. The comet currently lies low in the southwestern sky after darkness falls, but it won't stay there long. It can be seen among the background stars of the southern constellation Pyxis the Compass. It lies at about the same altitude at the bright star Procyon in Canis Minor.
The Comet's best view is until the 1st week of June from Southern Hemisphere. Afterwards it will be lost in the glow of the Sun until it emerges in the 1st week of July. Then the Northern Hemisphere population will also have a good look at the comet (hopefully without optical aid). These couple of evenings the sky is not that clear here in Johannesburg, to go comet hunting, but I'm looking for an opportunity to see it soon.
Read more about this comet on:

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