Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner: an image (11 Sept. 2018)
While both at its perihelion and about at its minimum distance from the Earth, we imaged comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, under good sky conditions. Here it is what we saw.
The image above comes from the average of 12, 180-seconds exposures, unfiltered, remotely collected “Elena” (PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E) robotic unit available at the Virtual Telescope Project. The robotic telescope tracked the apparent motion of comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, so stars left trails on the background. The image scale is 1.2″/pixel.
Once averaged, images were carefully processed to assure a good visibility of both the bright false nucleus and the faint coma. About 40 arc-mins North, there was the open star cluster Messier 37, offering a great sight.
We plan to observe this comet regularly.
Support The Virtual Telescope Project!
If everyone reading this right now would donate something, our fundraiser would be done in a few days. Please, donate and receive stunning, LIMITED EDITION panel showing the evolution of comet 46P/Wirtanen over the last weeks and more amazing images, specifically made for supporters like you!
donate now (you can adjust the amount later)
You can also order our 2019 Calendar, featuring our unique images of the stars above the legendary monuments of Rome!