Comet C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto) on Feb 13, 2019

C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto) on Feb 13, 2019, 09:20 UT. 40×30 sec @ ISO 3200, IDAS-LPS, Canon T3, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.

A new comet is in our neighborhood passing by at a relatively close 28 million miles from Earth.  It is a very long period comet that we have not seen before, but it has visited the inner solar system over 1300 years ago.  However, nobody noticed it because it was probably too dim to see naked eye.   It was discovered late last year by Japanese astronomer Masayuki Iwamoto.

Below is the Star-Streaks version with minimal processing.   Both images were treated minimally in these first iterations of processing.  There is probably room for improvement, but I doubt I’ll get much more than what I have here.

C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto) on Feb 13, 2019, 09:20 UT. 40×30 sec @ ISO 3200, IDAS-LPS, Canon T3, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.

I shot this from a Bortle Red/White zone in the middle of a metro area.   It was moving so fast that even 30 sec shots showed trailing.   So, I went with ISO 3200 and 30 sec exposures even though it trailed a bit, which was about max for the sky conditions I had this night.  I shot some 1 minute subs while trying to guide on the comet, but my DEC calibration was not working, so they showed some trailing in DEC.  Plus, I was barely able to pick it up with 4 sec subs, so it was not tracking too well at that setting.

These two didn’t come out too bad, I guess.   A darker location would have shown the tail better, probably and there is some hint of it here.  Reports are the comet can be seen in binoculars from dark sites, which is pretty good for any comet.   But, I knew from experience that when they are barely visible in binos from dark sites, binoculars are almost useless from inside a metro area, so I didn’t even try.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

11 − 4 =