Every day our eyes catch the light of our memories – time spent with family, the journey to work, a special holiday, a beautiful sunset or a dark starlit night. Each image captured is a picture drawn in light – a photograph: only to be lost in our minds or forever forgotten. Nearly two hundred years ago a small group of amateur scientists achieved what had eluded mankind for centuries – the ability to capture a permanent record of an image seen by their own eyes – a moment in time frozen onto a surface. They had discovered Photography. They were the ‘Catchers of the Light’.
Saturday, January 24, 2015
C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) _15-1-2015
C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) is a long-period comet discovered on 17 August 2014 by Terry Lovejoy using a 0.2-meter (8 in) Schmidt–Cassegrain telescope. It was discovered at apparent magnitude 15 in the southernconstellation of Puppis. It is the fifth comet discovered by Terry Lovejoy.
By December 2014, the comet had brightened to roughly magnitude 7.4, making it a small telescope and binoculars target. By mid-December, the comet was visible to the naked eye for experienced observers with dark skies and keen eyesight. On 28−29 December 2014, the comet passed 1/3° from globular cluster Messier 79. In January 2015, it brightened to roughly magnitude 4−5, and became one of the brightest comets located high in a dark sky in years. On 7 January 2015, the comet passed 0.469 AU (70,200,000 km; 43,600,000 mi) from Earth. It crossed the celestial equator on 9 January 2015 becoming better seen from thenorthern hemisphere. The comet will come to perihelion (closest approach to the Sun) on 30 January 2015 at a distance of 1.29 AU (193,000,000 km; 120,000,000 mi) from the Sun.
Before entering the planetary region (epoch 1950), C/2014 Q2 had an orbital period of about 11000 years. After leaving the planetary region (epoch 2050), it will have an orbital period of about 8000 years.