Comet C/2017 E4 Lovejoy: another stunning movie (05 Apr. 2017)

After our previous attempt, we captured another movie of comet C/2017 E4 Lovejoy and, again, we see how fast its tail is evolving. We captured very interesting details.

Comet C/2017 E4 Lovejoy: evolution of the ion tail on 5 April 2017, in 70 minutes

Comet C/2017 E4 Lovejoy: evolution of the ion tail on 5 April 2017, in 70 minutes


The movie above comes from 65, 60-seconds exposures, unfiltered, taken back to back on 5 April 2017, from about 10:58 UT to 12:13 UT, remotely using the 16″-f/3.75 Tenagra III (“Pearl”) robotic unit part of Tenagra Observatories in Arizona. The telescope tracked the apparent motion of the comet.

The ion tail shows large variations on such a short time-scale, including an evident “knot” of material flowing out from the the nucleus.

The observatory hosting the telescope is placed at 1300 meters above the sea level, in the Sonoran desert, providing one of the best skies in the world. This image is the first one coming from a cooperation between the Virtual Telescope Project and Tenagra Observatories, Ltd., which will be announced soon.

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