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Mike Olason

Location of Photo:

Tucson, Arizona

Date/Time of photo:

1 August 2021, 1141 UT


11" SCT and STF-8300M CCD Camera


A bright new comet was discovered by H. Nishimura of Japan on July 21. The comet was very close to the Sun as seen from Earth and was located on the other side of the Sun as seen from Earth. In these images taken through holes in the clouds and in a bright morning twilight sky above the clouds Comet C/2021 O1 (Nishimura) was magnitude about magnitude 10, in the images one could see a coma at least 0.02 degrees wide and a tail about 0.02 degrees long at a position angle of 298 degrees from the coma. The comet was 158.4 million miles from Earth. The images were taken when the comet was only 5 to 9 degrees above the eastern horizon. The comet will reach perihelion in it's orbit on 12 August 2021 when it will be 74 million miles from the Sun and may brighten to magnitude 9. The comet will make it's close approach to Earth on 5 August 2021 at 158 million miles. The comet is moving into the morning twilight so if one wants to view it or image it they should do so in the next few days before it becomes lost in the morning twilight and then moves behind the eastern horizon the second week of August.