The third spectacular conjunction

The C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS) and the Messier 106
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gallery/c2017t2_m106_an

On October 2, 2017, a comet discovered by the Pan-STARRS (Panoramic Survey Telescope And Rapid Response System) sky survey program. The comet was faint (19.9 magnitude). It was 1.27 billion km from Earth and 1.38 billion km from the Sun at the time of its discovery. Comet activity tends to get much closer to the sun, so its discovery and appearance are rare.

The comet with high absolute magnitude brightness came close to the sun (perihelion) on May 4, 2020, about 241 million kilometers (1.615 AU) from our central star, but due to its orbital deflection, unfortunately, as early as December 28, 2019, it was 227 million kilometers (1.517 AU). away from Earth. As I write these lines, it seems that we can look at it as the most stable comet of the year 2020. For several months, the comet, which can be detected with a brightness between 8-9 magnitudes, was observed in Hungary in the spring months as a circumpolar object.

The comet made one of the most beautiful assemblages of its celestial path from Earth on January 26/27, 2020 with the famous Double Cluster (NGC 869, NGC 884), which I also managed to capture on February 1st. The weather was not favorable then, as it is now, at the other spectacular depth-object encounter, that is, during the approach of the M81/M82 galaxy pair at the end of May. Unfortunately, we missed the tightest approach from Hungary due to the weather, but finally I can capture this photo.

The conjunction shown in the photo took place with the Messier 106 galaxy in Canes Venatici. The spiral galaxy with four arms was discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1781. Interestingly, two of the four arms do not contain the usual "matter," or stars, but hydrogen and gases that can be fired from a supermassive black hole in the center of the galaxy. M106 belongs to the Seyfert galaxies, which actually form a transition between normal galaxies and quasars, their cores are surrounded by spiral arms, so their structure is similar to that of normal galaxies. It is important to mention that the material of the galaxy is constantly absorbed by the central black hole.

Despite the short integration time, details of the galaxy are already emerging, and it is even clear that the comet's nucleus, was not in the middle of the comet's coma, which seemed to have slightly "curved."

This photo was taken with the support of the Nation's Young Talent Scholarship, announced by Ministry of Human Resources, the Human Resources Support Manager and the National Talent Program.

Name:

C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS)

Constellation:

Canes Venatici

Coordinates:

R.A. 12 h 16 m 40 s Dec. +46° 25′ 49″

Type:

Comet

Distance from Sun: 

262 million km

Distance from Earth:

262 million km

Apparent size:

Coma: 4'; tail: 20' (PA 325°)

Brightness:

9.4m

Sidereal period:

231,003 years

Velocity:

32 km/s

Elongation:

73°

Date:

24/06/2020 22:52-23:23 UT

Total exposure time:

30 minutes

Location:

Tápióbicske, Pest, Hungary

Camera:

Canon EOS 1300D (modified)

Telescope:

Sky-Watcher Esprit 80/400 mm apochromatic refractor

Mount:

Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro GoTo

Guiding:

Lacerta MGEN-II

Corrector:

Sky-Watcher Field Flattener

Focal ratio, length:

f/5, 400 mm

ISO:

1600

Light:

10 x 180 s

Dark:

10

Flat:

15

Bias:

30

Processing:

Astro Pixel Processor, PixInsight, Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop

Location

Annotation

Animation

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Location in the Solar System

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The C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS)
AND THE messier 106

Main objects: C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS), Messier 106, NGC 4217