Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks: a new image – 27 Jan. 2024

We took a new image of comet 12P/Pons-Brooks, showing a nice tail, and we are pleased to share it here.

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks: 27 Jan. 2024.

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks: 27 Jan. 2024.

The image above comes from the sigma clipping combination of 15, 120-second unfiltered exposures, remotely taken with the ARTEC250+Paramount ME+C3Pro61000EC robotic unit available as part of the Virtual Telescope Project facility in Manciano, Italy. The resulting master frame was carefully processed to show the comet at its best.

Comet 12P shows here a nice, curved tail. On the top of the image a bright star is visible. It is 61 Cyg, nicknamed “Flying Star” in 1804 by Giuseppe Piazzi, who in 1792 discovered its large proper motion (about 5″/year). 61 Cyg is the brightest star among the apparently fastest ones (being the 7th of them) and it is visible by naked eye. In 1838, Friedrich Bessel measured its distance by the parallax method, finding 10.4 light years, vs the modern 11.4 value. This was the first distance estimate for a star other than our Sun.

We will continue monitoring comet 12P/Pons-Brooks over the next weeks, as it approaches its perihelion, next 21 April.

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