Planets, comets, and meteors


Planets

For a chart showing the planets currently visible in the sky, check here. Note you can change the time and other settings to customize the chart. Times are in Universal Time (subtract 8 hours to convert from Universal Time to Pacific Standard Time).

Check the Observatory's own Sky Report for a weekly summary of where the planets are.

This simple table for planispheres lists the constellation each naked-eye planet -- Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn -- is in on a month-by-month basis through the year 2035.

Comets

Comet Lovejoy C/2013 R1 is visible before dawn in December 2013. For more information click here.

Comet ISON skimmed the sunís surface in late November 2013. For more information click here.

Comet Lemmon C/2012 F6 was visible in May 2013. For more information click here.

Comet PANSTARRS was visible in March 2013. For more information click here.

Comet Panstarrs

Comet PANSTARRS C/2011 L4, imaged from the San Gabriel Mountains (near Mt. Wilson) between 4:30 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. on April 19, 2013. The picture shows the comet’s broad, fanlike dust tail spreading for several million miles away from the sun.

Multiple guided exposures were combined, resulting in an exposure of 4 minutes, 30 seconds. A Canon 20Da was used at ISO 1200 through a 5.5-inch diameter f/3.5 Celestron Comet-Catcher Schmidt-Newtonian telescope. (Image by Anthony Cook, Griffith Observatory).

 

For information on comets that may presently be visible to amateur astronomers go to:

Astrosite Groningen at: http://www.shopplaza.nl/astro/home.htm

Weekly Information on Bright Comets at: http://www.aerith.net/comet/weekly/current.html

Sky & Telescope news headlines at: http://SkyandTelescope.com/news/current

Meteors

For news about meteors and fireballs, check here.