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Comet C2017 T2 PanSTARRS 21-11-2019


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About this observation
Derek Robson
Time of observation
21/11/2019 - 00:13
Comet C2017 T2 PanSTARRS
Observing location
Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK
Canon 1100D
Tamron 70-300 mm f5.6 zoom lens
Fixed tripod
107 x 2s; ISO 6400
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This was my first attempt to find and image this comet.  Camera was mounted on fixed tripod. Approximate comet location found by star hopping, then taking 137 images, plus darks.  107 images stacked in DSS and saved as a grey scale negative image.  Stacking revealed an extremely faint object where the comet was expected (predicted by Stellarium software at mag 10.5.). Time of observation period 00:06 - 00:20 UT, 21/11/2019.  The image shown is a crop from the full scale image, placed alongside the Stellarium map.  The brightest stars nearest the comet are magnitude ~8.2-8.4 showing that the comet is much fainter than this.

Taken in freezing cold conditions. Painful fingers.


djswan2002's picture

Impressive acquisition with just a camera and a fixed tripod. I'm surprised to see you had a window of clear weather on the 21st!

Derek Robson's picture

Thank you. I like to test how far simple equipment can go so that anyone without a telescope but has a camera, won't be put off, but instead, encouraged that it is possible to delve deep and find faint objects.  Sky was patchy at the time, but seemed crystal clear in the windows that came between cloud.  It was overhead, so a difficult angle to deal with when you want to look through the camera.  I think either a camera with a adjustable back screen or a right angle attachment to the view finder is needed.  Although adjustable back screens would help, I still like to look through the camera view finder to star hop because the stars seem easier to navigate compared with fainter zoomed live screen images with less resolution (even at highest ISO for seeing). However, once found, I use a magnifying glass on the live screen. A magnifier attachment would be good to have.

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