Home > Comet, Ephemeris Program > 11/21/2013 – Ephemeris – Comets are unpredictable

11/21/2013 – Ephemeris – Comets are unpredictable

November 20, 2013

Ephemeris for Thursday, November 21st.  The sun will rise at 7:47.  It’ll be up for 9 hours and 21 minutes, setting at 5:09.   The moon, half way from full to last quarter, will rise at 8:46 this evening.

Comet ISON has been full of surprises.  I expect that to continue.  I’ve seen quite a few since my first two in 1957.  In 1973 the much hyped Comet Kohoutek failed to be spectacular as hoped.  Not quite a sungrazer, the comet’s nucleus broke up and it turned out to be a rather dustless comet that, though naked eye was not especially bright.  Usually when a nucleus breaks into large chunks it brightens.  That was the case with Comet West in 1976.  While rounding the sun its nucleus broke into 4 pieces.  The three surviving pieces threw out a great sweeping dust tail.  That comet   had little publicity in the popular media, after being burnt by Kohoutek three years before.  It was actually the second comet covered by this program.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Comet West

Comet West on March 8, 1976. Image tilted due to the camera being piggybacked on an equatorial mount. Horizon to the lower left. That’s the constellation Delphinus to the upper right.  My photo.

ISON 11/21/13

Chart for finding Comet ISON this morning (November 21, 2013 at 6:30 a.m.). Chart created using Cartes du Ciel.

 

Tomorrow

Chart for finding Comet ISON tomorrow morning (November 22, 2013 at 6:30 a.m.). Chart created using Cartes du Ciel.

 

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