Director: Nick James
Aug 23 Prafull Sharma reports a Kreutz comet in real time C3 images Aug 23 Szymon Liwo reports two Kreutz group comets in real time C3 images Aug 26 Zhijian Xu reports a non-group comet in real time C2 images Aug 27 Masanori Uchina reports a non-group comet in real time C2 images Aug 27 Worachate Boonplod reports a Meyer group comet in real time C2 images Aug 30 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Aug 31 Worachate Boonplod reports the return of 322P/SOHO in real time images Aug 31 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Sep 05 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Sep 08 Recovery of 2007 T4 (P/Gibbs) reported Sep 09 Recovery of 2008 Y1 (P/Boattini) as 2019 R1 reported Sep 09 Discovery of A/2019 Q1 reported Sep 10 Discovery of A/2019 Q2 reported Sep 10 Discovery of 2019 Q3 (PanSTARRS) reported Sep 10 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Sep 11 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Sep 11 Discovery of possible interstellar comet 2019 Q4 (Borisov) reported Sep 12 Worachate Boonplod reports a Meyer group comet in real time C2 images Sep 13 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Sep 17 Update
If there have been no recent updates try The German comet group page or Seiichi Yoshida's page for information or the Liga Iberoamericana de Astronomia for observations.
Comet Magnitude Trend Observable When visible Last visual observation PanSTARRS (2017 T2) 10 bright 70 N to 50 S morning 2019 September Africano (2018 W2) 10 bright 70 N to 10 S all night 2019 September 68P/Klemola 11 bright 50 N to 70 S early evening 2019 September 260P/McNaught 11.5 bright 55 N to 60 S best morning 2019 September ASASSN (2018 N2) 11.5 bright 70 N to 40 S best morning 2019 September 289P/Blanpain 12 ? bright 45 N to 80 S best morning Not yet observed 29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 13 ? varies 70 N to 50 S best morning 2019 August Lemmon (2018 R3) 13.5 fade Conjunction 2019 JulyPartial updates: The observable region is an approximate indication of the latitude at which the comet may be seen. Under good conditions comets may be visible outside this range. The period when visible is for the UK if the comet is visible from the UK, otherwise for 40 S or the Equator as appropriate. The last visual observation is as received by the Section, details are often updated on the basis of observations published elsewhere. Beginners will often find comets fainter than about 7th magnitude difficult to locate - see below for information on positions and finder charts.
Light curves of comets brighter than 10th magnitude or predicted to become that bright (aperture corrected for potential naked eye comets) [click on thumbnail to get the full scale image, updated on 2019 September 4]. The dotted lines represent 99% confidence limits. 2017 T2 - corrected for aperture. 2018 W2.
Comet magnitude parameters [ updated 2019 September 4].
Planning aids and information for forthcoming comets, valid out to about 2025.
The MPC also has a list of the last observation for all comets. Electronic observers should try and observe any comets that have not recently been observed according to the CBAT but which are expected to be within range of their equipment. Negative observations are also useful. In addition, the MPC has orbital elements for unusual asteroids, many of which have cometary orbits.
Download Richard Fleet's GraphDark software for graphically displaying comet (and other object) visibility. Latest version is 2.05, 2007 May.
Download William Schwittek's CometWin software for generating comet ephemerides and visibility diagrams. [Updated 2002 March 5]
Download Solex, N-body solar system dynamics software.
Visual and visual equivalent magnitude observations should be sent to me at <jds [at] ast.com.ac.uk> in simple text format. Visual observers can use the BAA visual report form to log observations. To avoid the use of multiple formats the ICQ format , which uses special keys to code observation particulars, is now standardised as the one to use for submission and archiving of observations. The ICQ have not updated their observation keys since 2010, so these additional keys are suggested for use when submitting observations to the BAA (updated 2017 January 4). Crni Vhr Observatory has launched the Comet Observation Database which allows entry of observations in ICQ format, and plots of light curves. Visual observations entered using this system should be emailed to me at the end of the month. Observations are usually analysed and sent to TA as soon as possible after the end of the month with a TA deadline of the 2nd; any late observations will be used in subsequent analyses. Observations will continue to be published by Guy Hurst in The Astronomer magazine in TA format. There is also a visual drawing form. The German comet group also has a computer program that will correctly format observations for the ICQ [2009 December].
Images should be sent to Denis Buczynski.
Regular contributors include James Abbott, Jose Aguiar, Alexander Amorim, Nicolas Biver, Denis Buczynski, Paul Camilleri, Matyas Csukas, Roger Dymock, John Fletcher, Marco Goiato, Juan Gonzalez, Bjorn Granslo, Werner Hasubick, Kevin Hills, Nick James, Heinz Kerner, Carlos Labordena, Rolando Ligustri, Michael Mattiazzo, Maik Mayer, Antonio Milani, Martin Mobberley, Jose Navarro Pina, Gabriel Oksa, Mieczyslaw Paradowski, Nirmal Paul, Stuart Rae, Walter Robledo, Tony Scarmato, Willian Souza, David Strange Johan Warrell and Seiichi Yoshida, several of whom contribute observations from their colleagues.
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Many thanks to those that regularly access this page for your interest. If you have any comments, suggestions for improvement or find any problems, please email the visual co-ordinator, Jon Shanklin, at j.shanklin @ bas.ac.uk. If you need to phone me, my home number is +44 (0)1223 571250 or my BAS number is +44 (0)1223 221482. Snail mail will reach me at the British Antarctic Survey, Madingley Road, CAMBRIDGE CB3 0ET, England. For information about my work with BAS see my web page at BAS.