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.
C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS)
R.A. 12 h 16 m 40 s Dec. +46° 25′ 49″
Distance from Sun:
262 million km
Distance from Earth:
262 million km
Coma: 4'; tail: 20' (PA 325°)
24/06/2020 22:52-23:23 UT
Total exposure time:
Tápióbicske, Pest, Hungary
Canon EOS 1300D (modified)
Sky-Watcher Esprit 80/400 mm apochromatic refractor
Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro GoTo
Sky-Watcher Field Flattener
Focal ratio, length:
f/5, 400 mm
10 x 180 s
Astro Pixel Processor, PixInsight, Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop