Astronomy Cast

Astronomy Cast takes a fact based journey through the cosmos as it offers listeners weekly discussions on astronomical topics ranging from planets to cosmology.

Comet 2007 W1 (Boattini)

Comet BoattiniComet Boattini is decreasing in brightness as he appears in the morning sky for observers in the norther hemisphere. This image was taken at Guidestar observatory on July 19 with the almost full moon 90 degrees away. The coma diameter is approx. 13' large, but due to heavy moonlight and its low altitude the very diffuse coma could also be not completly visible an much larger. The field of view of the image left is 22x15 arcminutes. An ion tail in south-west direction is clearly visible.
The comet now moves slowly through the constellation Aries at a magnitude of 7-8 and heads away from earth and sun, rapidly fading.
Comet Boattini has a long-periodic orbit that takes him around the sun in 63,000 years and the latest calculations show that it may be its first visit to the inner solar system coming from the Oort Cloud.