2013 Comet Lovejoy: Stony Brook University Astronomer and Professor Jin Koda Tracks and Studies Comet Lovejoy, Captured Images Surface Online

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By Jenalyn Villamarin | December 16, 2013 4:31 PM EST

The Stony Brook University assistant astrophysics professor and comet chaser Jin Koda tracks and studies the close flyby of the 2013 Comet Lovejoy. Prof Jin Koda together with his Japanese colleagues utilized the Subaru Telescope's Suprime-Cam in observing the comet's impressive tail on Monday, December 2.

"We used the largest telescope in the world," Prof Jin Koda stated in the Newsday report. He further added: "Subaru Telescope offers a rare combination of large telescope aperture and a wide-field camera. This enabled us to capture a detailed look at the nucleus while also photogenically framing inner portions of R1 Lovejoy's impressive ion tail."

During the time of the comet chaser's observation, the C/2013 R1 Comet Lovejoy was 80 million km far-away from planet Earth and 130 million km away from the Sun. According to the Space.com report, the comet that Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy discovered is expected to arrive at its closest point to the Sun on Sunday, December 22, at a distance of 75.4 million miles (121.4 million kilometers). 

Comet ISON has disappointed the viewers but the attention is now shifted to Comet Lovejoy due to its increasing visibility in the eastern night sky. Now, the captured images of the comet surface online.

Avid astrophotographer John Chumack sent his Comet Lovejoy photo evidence via email to Space.com describing the sky display as something spectacular. Mr Chumack's shared images were captured last November 13 from his observatories in Yellow Springs Research Station in Yellow Springs, Ohio with the use of his homemade 16" diameter F4.5 Fork Mounted Newtonian Telescope and QHY8 cooled color CCD camera.

The astrophotographer even gave tips on how to capture an image of the 2013 Comet Lovejoy. John Chumack suggested: "You can actually a capture a photo easily with a simple DSLR with any lens (28mm to 300mm) set to F4 or faster, put it on a tripod, set camera at ISO 800 to 1600, and take a 30-second exposure. To get it to show up better or show the comets tail well, you can take 10 to 20 images right in a row, and then stack them in a free stacking program like Deepsky stacker."

Have a look at the submitted night sky images of Comet Lovejoy in the astrophotography archive of Space.com.

More Articles to Read:

2013 Comet Lovejoy: Captured Image from Subaru Telescope's Suprime-Cam Clearly Show Comet's Tail - [READ]

2013 Comet Lovejoy: Goodbye Comet ISON, Comet Lovejoy Puts on a Fine December Sky Display - [READ]

2013 Comet ISON: Science Channel to Have Exclusive Documentary on Comet ISON's Trip Across the Solar System - [READ]

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