After being frustrated by many cloudy evenings, I was eventually able to see Comet McNaught for the first time on 21 January. I captured many images with varying degrees of success, trying different exposure times but none of them was exactly what I wanted. This was the best of them, even though the 60 second exposure resulted in a lot of visible movement of everything in the sky due to the planetís rotation. The photo was shot from my front lawn and the lines of light at the bottom of the pic are from vehicles passing in front of the local high school. I wanted to leave them in the photo so that it would give the image a point of visual reference. Viewed with the naked eye, the tail of the comet appeared to be much longer than what Iíve captured in this pic.
The comet was discovered by astronomer Robert H. McNaught Aug. 7 at Siding Spring Observatory, near Coonabarabran, New South Wales, Australia.
McNaught discovered this comet when it was a few degrees east of the ďheadĒ of Scorpius, on CCD images obtained with the observatoryís Uppsala Schmidt telescope. The images had been obtained as part of the Siding Spring Survey, whose mission is to contribute to the inventory of potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs) and comets (PHOs) that may pose a threat of impact and thus harm to civilization.
The only alterations here were to partially rotate (because I didnít have the camera set up level on my tripod), crop, and sharpen the image.
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rleclercq (630) 2007-02-07 15:13
Bon travail on se sent vraiment petit en regardant cette image.
AandK (1832) 2007-02-07 17:27
Oh yes!! That's what I was looking for!! Amazing capture! What a beauty! Can't tell you how jealous I am! The quality is really amazing...
How long was that exposed? 3min.? There is no noise at all! Really impressive! Is it still visible these days or did it vanish already? How was it and how did your niece like it?
Greetings from Siegen,
alejandroguzman (4684) 2007-02-10 1:58
I'm prettu sure it was exciting to see this kind of event, not usual btw. You were lucky to got it !!
bazal (7900) 2007-02-10 5:19
This is an impressive and beautiful scene that you propose here. And this is the firt picture of the McNaught comet that I see on TE. Your long posing time worked very well and result is great. I would love to be able to observe such scene. I remember the passage of the Hale-Bop comet in our northern lattitudes in the 90's. This was very impressive but Mc Naught seems much closer!
You were perfectly right to keep the bottom part of the picture with the vehicle's light. Further than the real esthetic aspect, it allows to get a bit of an idea of the scale of the scene.
Many thanks for sharing!
kittyhawk (1692) 2007-02-11 4:18
Nice night photo, I like the way you captured the comet. Really nice work with the camera. TFS.
vagabondtravels (6507) 2007-02-11 21:09
Really nice capture of this comet. I like the chosen veritcal fomat. Good shot of this nighttime event. Well done.
capthaddock (28790) 2007-02-13 16:57
Hi Tony - I just saw the version submitted by bakes888, this one is a bit darker, even if the weather conditions is not as ideal, it's still unique and interesting, I've never seen anything like it.
bakes888 (18499) 2007-02-15 3:18
Hi Tony. You have managed to capture much more of the tail than I did, in fact I donít think I could see that much of the tail with the naked eye. Well captured and composed. Thanks for sharing.
sergio1 (12152) 2007-02-16 8:22
Amazing shor muy fiend. Perfect decisive moment.
Buin (42350) 2007-02-18 6:29
A great shot! There have been several pictures of this phenomenon at TE but this is one of the most impressive. It shows very well the infinity which surrounds us.
Greetings from Germany!