Comet Swan is now visible and could be the best in years

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Comet C/2020 F8 SWAN captured by Australia’s Siding Spring telescope.


Esposito Raffaele / Telescope Siding Spring / Spaceweather.com

It is seeking to be a season for comets teasing skywatchers with their magnificent tails like elusive cosmic peacocks. Comet Atlas gave the impression to be an enormous deal earlier this 12 months earlier than it broke up and fizzled out. However simply as that promising house snowball was cracking up, Comet C/2020 F8 SWAN was found in late March.

Now Comet Swan might ship on the promise of a uncommon evening sky present that Atlas failed to supply. 

Already Swan might be seen to these with exquisitely darkish skies and sharp eyes. Others may additionally be capable of spot it with binoculars.

Astronomer Con Stoitsis said on Twitter that some predictions present the comet persevering with to brighten within the coming days.

“It needs to be an ‘apparent’ bare eye goal in mid-Might,” he stated. 

The comet makes its closest go by Earth on Might 13 and comes nearest to the solar on Might 27. 

There’re a variety of instruments on-line — TheSkyLive is a great place to start — that can assist you discover Comet Swan within the evening sky. And, after all, the comet also has a Twitter account worth following

Remember that comets are notoriously fickle, as Comet Atlas demonstrated, and Swan might additionally go from quickly brightening to fragmenting and fading at any second. 

With that in thoughts, it is in all probability a good suggestion to attempt to catch it now. You may search for it whereas additionally awaiting this week’s Eta Aquarid meteor bathe, which comes from the leftovers of one other house snowball, the famed Halley’s Comet. 


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