Monday, September 17, 2018

COMET 21P/GIACOBINI-ZINNER APPROACHING OPEN CLUSTER M37 Taken by Miguel Claro on September 10, 2018 @ Cumeada Observatory, official headquarters of Dark Sky® Alqueva Reserve, Reguengos de Monsaraz, Portugal.

A rich starfield in Auriga constellation shows a close-up view of a bright tail and greenish coma from Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner only separated by approximately 1º from the colourful and brightest open cluster in Auriga, M37 (at right), with an apparent magnitude of 6.2, lies at a distance of 4,511 light years from our Solar System. On 10th September 2018, the comet Giacobini-Zinner was near its perihelion and closest approach to Earth in 72 years, being only at a distance of 58 million km from our planet, was shining like a 7th magnitude star, remaining too faint to our naked-eyes though. This periodic comet is the known parent body of the upcoming Draconid meteor shower, a bursty display that typically peaks on Oct. 8th. Draconid outbursts do tend to occur in years near the comet’s close approach to the sun. However, leading forecasters do not expect an outburst this year despite the comet’s flyby. The image was captured from Cumeada Observatory official headquarters of Dark Sky® Alqueva Reserve, Portugal.

A short Time Lapse from a 3h sequence taken on 14th September, shows the motion of the comet against the starry sky of Dark Sky Alqueva Reserve, in Portugal. Put sound please :)

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