C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) Reaches Naked Eye Visibility

Posted December 29, 2014 by User 1

A new comet, C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy), has brightened more quickly than anticipated. Discovered in August, it was originally expected to peak at a fairly dim magnitude 8, but the comet has already reached magnitude 5.1, having brightened for the past several months at a rate of n=9.5 (where n=2 for a simple reflecting body like an asteroid). If the present rate of brightening continues, we anticipate a peak brightness of magnitude 4.5 to be reached during the second week of January, 2015.

The comet is presently moving northward on a path taking it west (to the right) of the constellation of Orion and should be high up in the northern skies around midnight at the time of maximum brightness.


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