Comet Lovejoy (C/2011 W3) has turned out to be a magnificent comet. Discovered by Terry Lovejoy, an amateur astronomer and comet hunter from Queensland, it had a close encounter with the Sun and wasn’t expected to survive.
But survive it did – and in a major way. It’s now formed a tail that’s over 10deg long and is visible naked eye in the pre-dawn Eastern sky.
These images were taken this morning, 22nd December using my Canon 40D’s with a 17-70mm and 24-105mm lens.
The clouds were rather annoying, blocking most of the tail, but it could’ve been much worse. A few degrees to the left and I wouldn’t have seen anything.
Here’s a short timelapse showing the comet rising. Shows how lucky I was with the clouds! Best to watch in HD on YouTube!
The exposures were between 40-70 seconds @ f/2.8 and f/4.0. I need a faster lens!
I hope the conditions are better tomorrow morning – it’s going to rise higher and get brighter over the next few days.
Thanks for looking.