Comet c/2104 Q2 (Lovejoy) – 2015-01-15

A bright comet is moving through the solar system and in January is just getting bright enough to be visible unaided.

I managed to see Lovejoy unaided from my location just south of Carp at 10pm on January 15th. The light pollution map shows my location as orange, but it’s probably a little better than that looking south west where the comet was.

The comet was just visible with averted vision and occasionally while looking directly at it. With binoculars it was of course obvious, but no tail was detectable. With my 173mm, f/5.7 Dob, the core was very distinct within the larger halo. Still no tail.

For brightness comparison, Botein, Epsilon and Zeta Aries were also just visible – mag 4.34, 4.69 and 4.84. However 63 and 47 Aries – mag 5.09 and 5.78 – were not.