Director: Nick James
Sep 26 Robert Pickard reports a Kreutz group comet in archival C2 images Sep 26 Peter Berrett reports a non-group comet in archival C2 images Sep 28 Discovery of 2021 R6 (P/Groeller) reported Sep 29 Peter Berrett reports a Meyer group comet in archival C2 images Sep 30 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Oct 02 Peiyuan Sun reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Oct 03 Discovery of 2021 S1 (ATLAS) reported Oct 04 Recovery of 2012 TK8 (P/Tenagra) as 2021 S2 reported Oct 07 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Oct 07 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Oct 08 Discovery of 2021 R7 (PanSTARRS) reported Oct 08 Discovery of 2021 S3 (PanSTARRS) reported Oct 08 Discovery of 2021 S4 (Tsuchinshan) reported Oct 08 Discovery of 2021 T1 (Lemmon) reported Oct 08 Discovery of 2021 T2 (Fuls) reported Oct 09 Discovery of 2021 T3 (P/PanSTARRS) reported Oct 11 Cometary activity reported in 2021 G2 Oct 11 Zesheng Yang reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Oct 13 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Oct 15 Worachate Boonplod reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Oct 15 Masanori Uchina reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C3 images Oct 16 Michal Biesiada reports a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Oct 17 342P/SOHO recovered by Worachate Boonplod in real time C3 images Oct 18 57P/ reported in outburst Oct 18 Michal Biesiada and Zesheng Yang report a Kreutz group comet in real time C2 images Oct 19 Discovery of 2021 U1 (P/Wierzchos) reported Oct 20 Update
If there have been no recent updates try The German comet group page or Seiichi Yoshida's page for information or the Liga Iberoamericana de Astronomia for observations.
Comet Magnitude Trend Observable When visible Last visual observation 8P/Tuttle 9 fade 0 S to 65 S early morning 2021 September 2019 L3 (ATLAS) 10.5 bright 80 N to 20 S best morning 2021 October 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko 10.5 bright 80 N to 50 S best morning 2021 October 4P/Faye 11.5 steady 80 N to 50 S best morning 2021 October 2021 O1 (Nishimura) 11.5 fade Conjunction Not yet observed 2017 K2 (PanSTARRS) 12 bright 75 N to 20 S evening 2021 October 57P/du Toit-Neujman-Delporte 12 outburst 35 N to 60 S evening (2021 October) 2020 T2 (Palomar) 12 fade 15 N to 65 S evening 2021 October 2021 Q5 (P/ATLAS) 13 fade 60 N to 20 S early morning 2021 October 2021 A1 (Leonard) 12.5 bright 80 N to 50 N early morning 2021 October 6P/d'Arrest 13 steady 30 N to 70 S evening 2021 October 29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 13 ? varies 80 N to 30 S best morning 2021 October 19P/Borrelly 13.5 bright 10 N to 70 S all night 2021 September 2019 T4 (ATLAS) 14 steady Poor elongation 2021 July 15P/Finlay 14 fade 75 N to 20 S morning 2021 September 2020 J1 (SONEAR) 14 fade Poor elongation 2021 SeptemberDetails are usually updated at the beginning of each month, but may be updated more frequently for brighter comets. The last update was on October 6. The magnitude is a rough value for the mean magnitude reported; some observers will see the comet brighter than this, whilst others will see it fainter. The observable region is an approximate indication of the latitude at which the comet may be seen. Under good conditions comets may be visible outside this range. The period when visible is for the UK if the comet is visible from the UK, otherwise for 40 S or the Equator as appropriate. The last visual observation is as received by the Section, details are often updated on the basis of observations published elsewhere. Beginners will often find comets fainter than about 7th magnitude difficult to locate - see below for information on positions and finder charts.
Light curves of comets that may become brighter than 10th magnitude (aperture corrected for potential naked eye comets) [click on thumbnail to get the full scale image, updated on 2021 October 2]. The dotted lines represent 99% confidence limits. 2017 K2.
Comet magnitude parameters [ updated 2021 October 2].
Planning aids and information for forthcoming comets, valid out to about 2025.
The MPC also has a list of the last observation for all comets. Electronic observers should try and observe any comets that have not recently been observed according to the CBAT but which are expected to be within range of their equipment. Negative observations are also useful. In addition, the MPC has orbital elements for unusual asteroids, many of which have cometary orbits.
Download Richard Fleet's GraphDark software for graphically displaying comet (and other object) visibility. Latest version is 2.05, 2007 May.
Download William Schwittek's CometWin software for generating comet ephemerides and visibility diagrams. [Updated 2002 March 5]
Download Solex, N-body solar system dynamics software.
Visual and visual equivalent magnitude observations should be sent to me at <jds [at] ast.cam.ac.uk> in simple text format. Visual observers can use the BAA visual report form to log observations. To avoid the use of multiple formats the ICQ format , which uses special keys to code observation particulars, is now standardised as the one to use for submission and archiving of observations. The ICQ have not updated their observation keys since 2010, so these additional keys are suggested for use when submitting observations to the BAA (updated 2020 October 3). Crni Vhr Observatory has launched the Comet Observation Database which allows entry of observations in ICQ format, and plots of light curves. Visual observations entered using this system should be emailed to me at the end of the month. Observations are usually analysed and sent to TA as soon as possible after the end of the month with a TA deadline of the 2nd; any late observations will be used in subsequent analyses. Observations will continue to be published by Guy Hurst in The Astronomer magazine in TA format. There is also a visual drawing form. The German comet group also has a computer program that will correctly format observations for the ICQ [2009 December].
Images should be sent to Denis Buczynski.
Regular contributors include James Abbott, Jose Aguiar, Alexander Amorim, Nicolas Biver, Denis Buczynski, Paul Camilleri, Peter Carson, Matyas Csukas, Roger Dymock, John Fletcher, Marco Goiato, Juan Gonzalez, Bjorn Granslo, Werner Hasubick, Kevin Hills, Nick James, Heinz Kerner, Carlos Labordena, Rolando Ligustri, Michael Mattiazzo, Maik Mayer, Antonio Milani, Martin Mobberley, Jose Navarro Pina, Gabriel Oksa, Mieczyslaw Paradowski, Nirmal Paul, Stuart Rae, Walter Robledo, Tony Scarmato, Willian Souza, David Strange, Johan Warrell, Chris Wyatt and Seiichi Yoshida, several of whom contribute observations from their colleagues. Thanks are due to all of them.
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Many thanks to those that regularly access this page for your interest. If you have any comments, suggestions for improvement or find any problems, please email the visual co-ordinator, Jon Shanklin, at j.shanklin @ bas.ac.uk. If you need to phone me, my home number is +44 (0)1223 571250 or my BAS number is +44 (0)1223 221482. Snail mail will reach me at the British Antarctic Survey, Madingley Road, CAMBRIDGE CB3 0ET, England. For information about my work with BAS see my web page at BAS.