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Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Two Comets Visible Together in Night Sky

Yahoo! News says: Wow!  

Two comets are putting on an amazing night sky show this month and some intrepid photographers have captured rare views of both celestial objects at the same time.
The photos of Comet Pan-STARRS - which made its closest pass by Earth today (March 5) - and Comet Lemmon were taken by veteran space photographers in Chile and Australia in late February. At the time, both comets were visible from the Southern Hemisphere, though Comet Pan-STARRS is set to become visible from the Northern Hemisphere later this week.

One of the double-comet photos was taken by Yuri Beletsky, a Magellan Instrument Support Scientist at Las Campanas Observatory located in the Atacama Desert of Chile. Beletsky is an accomplished space photographer and used a Canon 5D Mark II camera with an exposure time of about 30 seconds on Feb. 28 to capture the rare sight of the two comets together. "

Comet Pan-STARRS was discovered in June 2011 by astronomers using the Panoramic Survey Telescope & Rapid Response System, or Pan-STARRS telescope, in Hawaii. The comet's official designation is C/2011 L4 (PANSTARRS) and it is making its closest approach to Earth today, coming within 100 million miles (160 million kilometers) to the planet. The comet has brightened considerably in recent days, and could be a dazzling naked-eye sight in the March night sky. [Photos of Comet Pan-STARRS by Stargazers]
Comet Lemmon, or C/2012 F6, was discovered by Alex Gibbs of the Mount Lemmon survey in Arizona in March 2012. It has been gradually getting brighter as it entered the inner solar system and will make its closest approach to the sun on March 24.

Rare Photos Capture 2 Comets Together in Night Sky - Yahoo News -

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