Shop at Amazon US

Contributions

If you like the website and want to contribute to the running costs then please do so below. All contributions are most welcome.

PayPal - The safer, easier way to pay online.

During December 2013, Comet Lovejoy was for most of the month visible to the naked eye and easily seen through binoculars and small telescopes in the morning sky from northern latitudes. Although it has now faded to 6th magnitude and at the very limit of naked eye visibility, the comet remains a binocular and telescope object as the New Year begins.

Comet Lovejoy on November 13. 2013 (credit:- http://beardedgit.com/?p=9982)

Location and star chart

On December 12th, Lovejoy crossed the boundary from Corona Borealis into Hercules traveling in a southeastern direction and although fading it was still at magnitude +5.0. The comet then remains in Hercules until January 14th, when it moves into Ophiuchus.

Lovejoy is expected to decrease in magnitude from +6.0 at the end of December to magnitude +7.6 on January 31st and then magnitude +8.6 at the end of February. Despite fading, the comet should remain within binocular and small telescope range during this time.

From northern temperate locations, Lovejoy is currently positioned reasonably high above the eastern horizon during the early hours of the morning. Observers located in the Southern Hemisphere won't be able to see Lovejoy until early February when it appears low down above the eastern horizon just before sunrise.

The finder charts below show the positions of comet Lovejoy from December 16, 2013 to January 23, 2014 and from December 2 to December 30, 2013.

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) Finder Chart from December 16, 2013 to January 23, 2014

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) Finder Chart from December 16, 2013 to January 23, 2014 - pdf format

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) Finder Chart from December 2 to December 30, 2013

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) Finder Chart from December 2 to December 30, 2013 - pdf format

C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) Data (at epoch September 23, 2013)

NameC/2013 R1 (Lovejoy)
TypeComet
DiscovererTerry Lovejoy
Discovery dateSeptember 7, 2013
Aphelion (AU)678.767
Perihelion (AU)0.81161
Semi-major axis339.789
Eccentricity0.99761
Orbital period (years)6263.58
Inclination (degrees)64.0403
Longitude of ascending node (degrees)70.7012
PerihelionDecember 25th, 2013
NotesFourth comet discovered by Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) Data Table

DateRight AscensionDeclinationEstimated MagnitudeDistance from Earth (AU)Constellation
15 Dec 201316h 38m 49s30d 10m 12s5.10.752Hercules
16 Dec 201316h 43m 06s29d 29m 29s5.20.772Hercules
17 Dec 201316h 47m 08s28d 49m 37s5.30.792Hercules
18 Dec 201316h 50m 56s28d 10m 34s5.40.812Hercules
19 Dec 201316h 54m 30s27d 32m 19s5.40.832Hercules
20 Dec 201316h 57m 54s26d 54m 51s5.50.853Hercules
21 Dec 201317h 01m 07s26d 18m 06s5.50.873Hercules
22 Dec 201317h 04m 10s25d 42m 03s5.60.892Hercules
23 Dec 201317h 07m 04s25d 06m 41s5.60.912Hercules
24 Dec 201317h 09m 50s24d 31m 58s5.70.932Hercules
25 Dec 201317h 12m 29s23d 57m 52s5.80.951Hercules
26 Dec 201317h 15m 01s23d 24m 23s5.80.971Hercules
27 Dec 201317h 17m 26s22d 51m 58s5.90.990Hercules
28 Dec 201317h 19m 46s22d 19m 37s5.91.009Hercules
29 Dec 201317h 22m 01s21d 47m 48s6.01.027Hercules
30 Dec 201317h 24m 11s21d 16m 30s6.01.046Hercules
31 Dec 201317h 26m 17s20d 45m 43s6.11.064Hercules
01 Jan 201417h 28m 18s20d 15m 25s6.11.082Hercules
02 Jan 201417h 30m 16s19d 45m 36s6.21.100Hercules
03 Jan 201417h 32m 09s19d 16m 15s6.21.117Hercules
04 Jan 201417h 33m 60s18d 47m 22s6.31.134Hercules
05 Jan 201417h 35m 47s18d 18m 55s6.31.151Hercules
06 Jan 201417h 37m 32s17d 50m 55s6.41.167Hercules
07 Jan 201417h 39m 14s17d 23m 21s6.41.183Hercules
08 Jan 201417h 40m 53s16d 56m 12s6.51.199Hercules
09 Jan 201417h 42m 29s16d 29m 27s6.51.215Hercules
10 Jan 201417h 44m 04s16d 03m 08s6.61.230Hercules
11 Jan 201417h 45m 36s15d 37m 12s6.61.245Hercules
12 Jan 201417h 47m 06s15d 11m 41s6.71.260Hercules
13 Jan 201417h 48m 34s14d 46m 32s6.71.274Hercules
14 Jan 201417h 50m 00s14d 21m 47s6.81.288Hercules
15 Jan 201417h 51m 25s13d 57m 25s6.81.302Ophiuchus
16 Jan 201417h 52m 48s13d 33m 25s6.91.315Ophiuchus
17 Jan 201417h 54m 09s13d 09m 47s6.91.328Ophiuchus
18 Jan 201417h 55m 29s12d 46m 31s7.01.340Ophiuchus
19 Jan 201417h 56m 47s12d 23m 36s7.01.353Ophiuchus
20 Jan 201417h 58m 03s12d 01m 03s7.11.365Ophiuchus
21 Jan 201417h 59m 19s11d 38m 50s7.11.376Ophiuchus
22 Jan 201418h 00m 32s11d 16m 58s7.21.387Ophiuchus
23 Jan 201418h 01m 45s10d 55m 26s7.21.398Ophiuchus
24 Jan 201418h 02m 56s10d 34m 14s7.31.409Ophiuchus
25 Jan 201418h 04m 06s10d 13m 21s7.31.419Ophiuchus
26 Jan 201418h 05m 14s09d 52m 47s7.41.429Ophiuchus
27 Jan 201418h 06m 21s09d 32m 32s7.41.439Ophiuchus
28 Jan 201418h 07m 27s09d 12m 35s7.51.448Ophiuchus
29 Jan 201418h 08m 32s08d 52m 56s7.51.457Ophiuchus
30 Jan 201418h 09m 35s08d 33m 34s7.61.466Ophiuchus
31 Jan 201418h 10m 37s08d 14m 29s7.61.474Ophiuchus
01 Feb 201418h 11m 38s07d 55m 41s7.71.482Ophiuchus
02 Feb 201418h 12m 38s07d 37m 09s7.71.490Ophiuchus
03 Feb 201418h 13m 36s07d 18m 52s7.71.497Ophiuchus
04 Feb 201418h 14m 33s07d 00m 51s7.81.504Ophiuchus
05 Feb 201418h 15m 29s06d 43m 05s7.81.511Ophiuchus
06 Feb 201418h 16m 24s06d 25m 32s7.91.517Ophiuchus
07 Feb 201418h 17m 17s06d 08m 14s7.91.523Ophiuchus
08 Feb 201418h 18m 09s05d 51m 09s7.91.529Ophiuchus
09 Feb 201418h 18m 60s05d 34m 17s8.01.535Ophiuchus
10 Feb 201418h 19m 49s05d 17m 37s8.01.540Ophiuchus
11 Feb 201418h 20m 37s05d 01m 10s8.11.545Ophiuchus
12 Feb 201418h 21m 24s04d 44m 54s8.11.550Serpens Cauda
13 Feb 201418h 22m 10s04d 28m 49s8.11.554Ophiuchus
14 Feb 201418h 22m 54s04d 12m 56s8.21.558Ophiuchus
15 Feb 201418h 23m 37s03d 57m 12s8.21.562Ophiuchus
16 Feb 201418h 24m 19s03d 41m 39s8.31.566Ophiuchus
17 Feb 201418h 24m 59s03d 26m 15s8.31.569Ophiuchus
18 Feb 201418h 25m 38s03d 11m 00s8.31.572Ophiuchus
19 Feb 201418h 26m 16s02d 55m 54s8.41.575Serpens Cauda
20 Feb 201418h 26m 52s02d 40m 57s8.41.578Serpens Cauda
21 Feb 201418h 27m 27s02d 26m 07s8.41.580Serpens Cauda
22 Feb 201418h 28m 00s02d 11m 25s8.51.582Serpens Cauda
23 Feb 201418h 28m 32s01d 56m 50s8.51.584Serpens Cauda
24 Feb 201418h 29m 03s01d 42m 21s8.51.585Serpens Cauda
25 Feb 201418h 29m 32s01d 27m 59s8.51.587Serpens Cauda
26 Feb 201418h 29m 59s01d 13m 43s8.61.588Serpens Cauda
27 Feb 201418h 30m 25s00d 59m 32s8.61.589Serpens Cauda
28 Feb 201418h 30m 49s00d 45m 26s8.61.590Serpens Cauda

See also

Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) remains visible with binoculars and small telescopes
Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) continues to impress into December 2013
Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) a naked eye Northern Hemisphere comet during December
Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) remains a naked eye object. easy with binoculars
Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) reaches naked eye brightness
Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) visible with binoculars
Comet Lovejoy (C/2013 R1) now within small telescope range