C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Celestial visitors from the edge of the Solar System.
Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » December 30th, 2014, 11:33 am

Terry Lovejoy discovered his fifth comet in August, and this one promises to give a moderately-bright show.

Below are the times during which Lovejoy culminates in the Baton Rouge sky, along with its constellation...
30 December = 10:38pm, alt 39˚ [Lepus]
31 December = 10:27pm, alt 41˚ [Lepus]
1 January = 10:16pm, alt 43˚ [Lepus]
2 January = 10:05pm, alt 45˚ [Eridanus]
3 January = 9:54pm, alt 48˚ [Eridanus]
4 January = 9:43pm, alt 50˚ [Eridanus]
5 January = 9:32pm, alt 53˚ [Eridanus]
6 January = 9:21pm, alt 55˚ [Eridanus]
7 January = 9:11pm, alt 58˚ [Eridanus]
8 January = 9:00pm, alt 60˚ [Taurus]
9 January = 8:50pm, alt 63˚ [Taurus]
10 January = 8:39pm, alt 65˚ [Taurus]
11 January = 8:29pm, alt 67˚ [Taurus]
12 January = 8:19pm, alt 70˚ [Taurus]
13 January = 8:09pm, alt 72˚ [Taurus]
14 January = 7:59pm, alt 74˚ [Taurus]
15 January = 7:49pm, alt 76˚ [Taurus]
16 January = 7:40pm, alt 78˚ [Aries]
17 January = 7:31pm, alt 80˚ [Aries]
18 January = 7:22pm, alt 82˚ [Aries]
19 January = 7:13pm, alt 84˚ [Aries]
20 January = 7:04pm, alt 86˚ [Aries]
21 January = 6:56pm, alt 87˚ [Aries]
22 January = 6:47pm, alt 89˚ [Aries]
23 January = 6:39pm, alt 90˚ [Aries]

Personnel at the Highland Road Park Observatory will attempt to acquire views of Lovejoy on 9 January, 10 January, 16 January and 17 January. The two Friday viewing attempts will occur from 8:30pm to 10pm. The two Saturday viewing attempts will occur from 7pm to 10pm.

More information:
http://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronom ... 122920141/
http://www.aerith.net/comet/catalog/2014Q2/2014Q2.html

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » December 30th, 2014, 9:07 pm

Roslyn Readinger and I just got Lovejoy in the Observatory's AstroScan. We viewed it with a 32mm (~14x), a 25mm (~17.8x) and an 18mm (~24.8x). Feeling courageous, we brought out one of the 6" Dobs, and after much trial and error (following the magnitude and color patterns of stars from Rigel) we obtained Lovejoy with that telescope as well. We looked with the 32mm (37.5x), the 25mm (48x) and the 18mm (~66.7x).

Although each of us easily discerned the blue-green color, neither of us saw a tail. At this time Lovejoy is probably at 5.0 or 4.9. It may reach 4.1 by mid-January.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » December 31st, 2014, 8:39 pm

Lovejoy reached thirty degrees altitude at 8:05pm. At 10:27pm it will be 3˚38' north of K-class, magnitude 3.2 Epsilon Leporis and 3˚31' southwest of B-class, magnitude 3.3 Mu Leporis.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » January 5th, 2015, 7:11 pm

Lovejoy reached thirty degrees altitude at 6:19pm, though it wasn't completely dark until 6:44pm. At 9:32pm Lovejoy will be 3˚57' east of F-class, magnitude 4.0 Beid and 4˚22' south-southwest of B-class, magnitude 3.9 Nu Eridani. The waning gibbous Moon will be fifty-five degrees away.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » January 6th, 2015, 11:08 am

I got Lovejoy again last night in the AstroScan. I blocked the Moon using the main building of HRPO, though it helped only marginally and I only confirmed the comet and didn't look for long. Now, however, the Moon is moving on and Lovejoy is getting a darker sky!

Reports are mentioned at S&T of a 5 January magnitude for Lovejoy of 4.4 to 5.0. Lovejoy will reach thirty degrees altitude tonight at 5:59pm, though it won't be completely dark until 6:44pm. At 9:21pm Lovejoy will be 3˚07' northeast of F-class, magnitude 4.0 Beid and 4˚05' west-southwest of B-class, magnitude 3.9 Nu Eridani. The waning gibbous Moon will be sixty-seven degrees away.
Last edited by Christopher K. on January 13th, 2015, 9:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » January 6th, 2015, 8:32 pm

For the third time I have seen Lovejoy. A distanced Moon and increasing magnitude (I assume) led to the best view yet. Once again with the AstroScan I looked with three eyepieces, the last being the 18mm (~25x). I was so glad--I saw the nucleus!

So that's three different nights finding a moderately bright comet as its cruises the winter sky. Maybe I'm honing a new skill.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » January 7th, 2015, 3:55 pm

Lovejoy reaches thirty degrees altitude at 5:41pm, though it won't be completely dark until 6:45pm. At 9:11pm Lovejoy will be 4˚43' north of F-class, magnitude 4.0 Beid and 5˚41' west-northwest of B-class, magnitude 3.9 Nu Eridani. The waning gibbous Moon will be seventy-nine degrees away.

Print-friendly finder chart showing Lovejoy through 31 January:
http://www.skyandtelescope.com/wp-conte ... oy2_BW.pdf

btoman
Posts: 208
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 10:35 pm
Location: Baton Rouge

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by btoman » January 7th, 2015, 10:28 pm

I braved the cold temperatures to go get my first glimpse of the comet. I haven't had a chance on any other day that wasn't cloudy and I wasn't going to let the low temps deter me.

I found it easily with my 7x50 binos and then used my 20x80 binos for an even more impressive view. I didn't notice a tail, either, but it is a very conspicuous object. I did one of my horrible sketches of the nearby stars with the comet. Hopefully we'll have another clear night tomorrow or soon so I can do one more sketch and be one comet closer to my Comet Hunter A.L. certificate!

Poppa-Chris
Posts: 112
Joined: December 13th, 2012, 5:32 pm
Location: Denham Springs, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Poppa-Chris » January 8th, 2015, 2:41 pm

btoman wrote:I braved the cold temperatures to go get my first glimpse of the comet. I haven't had a chance on any other day that wasn't cloudy and I wasn't going to let the low temps deter me.

I found it easily with my 7x50 binos and then used my 20x80 binos for an even more impressive view. I didn't notice a tail, either, but it is a very conspicuous object. I did one of my horrible sketches of the nearby stars with the comet. Hopefully we'll have another clear night tomorrow or soon so I can do one more sketch and be one comet closer to my Comet Hunter A.L. certificate!
Ben! Two thumbs up! :D
Poppa-Chris


"First star to the right, then straight on until morning!" - Peter Pan

Christopher K.
Posts: 4810
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

Post by Christopher K. » January 8th, 2015, 4:26 pm

Fantastic, Ben! Having this south Louisiana constitution, I holed up inside until the Sun rose and the wind had died down.

Lovejoy reaches thirty degrees altitude at 5:23pm, though it won't be completely dark until 6:46pm. At 9:00pm Lovejoy will be 5˚44' south of A-class, magnitude 3.9 Nu Tauri and 8˚07' west-northwest of B-class, magnitude 3.9 Nu Eridani. The waning gibbous Moon will be ninety-one degrees away.

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