Saturday, December 3, 2011

Comet C/2011 W3 Lovejoy

Coming soon to a STEREO imager near you, newly found comet C/2011 W3 Lovejoy. Will it make the distance? Ground based imagers indicate some brightning starting to happen. Several more days to wait for the STEREO data to catch up.
The possibilities are seen here,
http://cometal-comets.blogspot.com/2010/03/bright-stereo-comet.html

What would a comet impact look like? This sequence of plasma falling back to the solar surface is from the large CME of june 07. http://helioviewer.org/?movieId=lHl15

20111210-11 - The comet has arrived into the STEREO HI1 imagers FOV. Showing a well formed tail and quite bright. Compared to the other two bright kreutz seen above it is a few orders of magnitude larger. So if all goes well and it has the mass and integrity. The comet may make it passed the close approach to the Sun. The orbit data needs to updated with the new image data to confirm this though. Here what it looks like? as always image data courtesy of STEREO/SECCHI/NASA, many thanks.

20111214 - A small kreutz comet entered into the SOHO C2 FOV and vaporised, as they usually do, is this a prelude to what Comet Lovejoy may do? Comet Lovejoy has been estimate at being 200m wide.
video

Comet C/2011 W3 Lovejoy continues to brighten and extend its tail. This image below shows the comet from two points of view. Each postion is at the same time step.


20111215- The comet has now entered into the FOV of SOHO C3.

20111216 - Tried to photograph the comet from the ground, Thought I had something, I could not work out focus at infinity, but close focus proved it was just cobwebs and cosmics, oh well may be later. ( I did try this yesterday with no result.. realise today's effort was too late...)
... then again, later might be tooooo late....  Yep...
The comet has reached the contact point with the sun surfaces, now SDO and STEREO cameras are the only ones with a good view
The comet head is now very close to the sun and is showing signs of shrinking, it's harsh out there...
image data from SOHO/LASCO/ESA/NRL.

20111216 11:30am Oztime - Amazing  SDO has the comet in moving images,
 Amazing success with the SDO image stream, well done to Karl Battams NRL for kicking butt.. and SDO for the great efforts...eagerly awaiting STEREO follow up... again sooo amazing...follow links...

Camilla_SDO First video of Comet Lovejoy through the AIA telescope on @NASA_SDO #CometLoveJoy owl.li/810tC

20111216 13:19 - Just checked in again to find the great news, C/2011 W3 Lovejoy has made it around the corner, follow this tweet from  Sungrazing Comets
I'm astounded and delighted! RT : Comet Lovejoy reemerging on the other side of the sun
20111218 - The STEREO DATA is beginning to arrive, Here is the comet entering STEREO COR2A, with some image processing and scaling done...


Comet Lovejoy inbound as seen in SDO images

Comet Lovejoy survives as is seen heading out in SDO imager.

20111218 - below The Comet is seen heading out in STEREO Cor2A
20111222 - STEREO HI1A images for 20111219 show structures in an expanding dust tail.
video
20111223 - Structured comet image from STEREO data of 20111220
20111230 - images in STEREO HI2A indicate a steady fading of the comet tail. Not as dynamic as 45P Honda-Mp... mostly dust?