Posted by: tpsciencefun | November 13, 2013

Find Out About Current Events in Space!

www.spaceweather.com….what an awesome website.

There are amazing comets now visible in our night sky. To learn more about the events in space this November and in the months to come do some sky searching and have fun.    Be sure to check out the changing phases of the moon and see if you know the planets that our in our sky this month too.  Don’t forget your binoculars and telescopes.

COMET NEWS: Observers around the world report that Comet ISON is now visible in binoculars. The comet is brightening as it plunges toward the sun for a perilous pass through the solar atmosphere on Nov. 28th. It is not, however, the brightest comet in the night sky. As November unfolds, there is a rare gathering of four comets rising in the east before dawn. Visit http://spaceweather.com to find out which one is outshining media-favorite ISON.

Apparently, Comet ISON has surged in brightness by approximately 2 magnitudes in little more than 24 hours. If the trend continues, it could be a faint but easy naked-eye object by the end of the week.

The sudden uptick in brightness could be caused by a fresh vein of ice opening up in the comet’s nucleus. Rapid vaporization of ice by solar heat is a sure-fire way to boost a comet’s visibility. But, as NASA’s Comet ISON Observing Campaign states, “we [really] have no idea.” The comet’s nucleus is hidden from view by a hazy green atmosphere, so events in the interior remain a mystery

Comet Lovejoy is one of four comets now rising in the east before dawn. The other three are exploding Comet LINEAR X1, sungrazing Comet ISON, and short-period Comet Encke, and the brightest of them all. All four are easy targets for backyard optics. Dates of special interest include Nov. 15-18 when Comet LINEAR X1 passes by the bright star Arcturus, Nov 17-18 when Comet ISON has a close encounter with Spica, and Nov. 18-20 when Comet Encke buzzes Mercury. These stars and planets make excellent naked-eye guideposts for finding the comets. Meanwhile, bright Comet Lovejoy is approaching the Big Dipper; if you can’t see it with your unaided eye, a quick scan with binoculars will reveal it

(Information from http://www.spaceweather.com)

 

Advertisements

Categories

%d bloggers like this: