Comet 46P/Wirtanen is entering the Northern sky: a close-up image (1 Dec. 2018)

Comet 46P/Wirtanen is higher and higher in the northern skies, preparing for its imminent show. While we are waiting, here it is a new image from last night.

Comet 46P/Wirtanen: 1 Dec. 2018

Comet 46P/Wirtanen: 1 Dec. 2018

* NB: versione in Italiano qui *

The image above comes from the average of five, 180-seconds exposures, unfiltered, remotely collected with the “Elena” (PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E) robotic unit available at the Virtual Telescope Project. The robotic telescope tracked the apparent motion comet Wirtanen, so stars left trails on the background. The image scale is 1.2″/pixel.

This new close-up shows the inner coma, surrounding the so-called false nucleus, where the “dirty snowball” originating the whole activity is placed. Images were carefully processed to preserve the delicate visibility of the coma. At the imaging time, the comet was only 30 degrees above the horizon. You can see our past images of the same object here.

We plan to follow comet 46P intensively and we will also share it live, online, soon, so stay tuned!

NB: we have here a quick guide for you to observe comet Wirtanen personally!

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