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Photographer:

Mike Olason

Location of Photo:

Tucson, Arizona

Date/Time of photo:

6 May 2021, 0806 UT

Equipment:

11" SCT and STF-8300M CCD Camera

Description:

Comet C/2020 J1 (SONEAR) is magnitude 13.2 and 223 million miles from Earth in these images. It has a 0.01 degree coma/tail mainly to the east of the nucleus. The Earth is on a line almost between the Sun and the comet so the tail is probably behind the comet as seen from the Earth. The comet was at perihelion in it's orbit on April 18 when it was 311 million miles from the Sun . The comet makes it's close approach to Earth on May 16 when it will be 219 million miles from Earth and may brighten to about magnitude 13. Unfortunately for most Northern observers the comet is currently at -32 degrees declination barely above the southern horizon for most.