PANSTARRS high-tailing it

Mar 26

Written by:
3/26/2013 7:52 AM  RssIcon

Late last week I was able to get a few more pictures of Comet PANSTARRS.  The one immediately below, taken by me, shows the comet on the 21st.  I did a little processing, but not much - mostly just some contrast.  However, as I was playing with the contrast, I notice something about the comet's tail.  There's more there than meets the eye.

Look at the picture closely.  Notice how the tail seems to fan out towards the left?  It's faint... really faint in fact, but some amount of it was picked up and displayed in the photo below.  I asked about that when I posted the picture on an astronomy forum the other day.  Last night, someone followed up by posting a link to a picture of PANSTARRS by Lorenzo Comolli that really captures that tail in fantastic detail - demonstrating just how far out that dust stretches into space.

I thought it made an interesting comparison, and it really helped me see more clearly what I knew I was capturing - sort of! - with my photos, but someone else was capturing much more clearly than I could.  Definitely an interesting comparison of the comet.

Comet PANSTARRS and 55, 54 Piscium, March 21, 2013 photo CometC2011L4PANSTARRSand55Psc54PscMarch212013.jpg

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The Nightlight

This blog includes what to see in the night and daytime skies, thoughts on telescopes, binoculars, and other astronomy observing accessories and equipment, plus my own occasional notes on objects I've seen and observed. Oh, and the random theater or other "my take on life" post. In other words, there is always something interesting. Check it out.