Comet?

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posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 01:47 AM
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First guess...comet...but really can't say for certain.....Oddly enough, it was my first night out with my new telescope go figure huh


very bright...not really rounded at all but more of just a straight line that shot straight across the sky with a decent length tail...almost looked as if it was actually in the atmosphere...very big...was adjusting my azimuth when i looked up and saw it....
11:10 PM 6/15/2013
Toledo, WA (46.4518, -122.7656)
Bearing: NW to SE

Anybody know where I can go to identify this? (just beginning my endeavours into astronomy....)

A2D

(BTW, when I was on starry night just before going out to begin my viewing, it didn't say there were any events for viewing other than Io occultation....)
edit on 16-6-2013 by Agree2Disagree because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 02:01 AM
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Originally posted by Agree2Disagree
very bright...not really rounded at all but more of just a straight line that shot straight across the sky with a decent length tail...almost looked as if it was actually in the atmosphere..


Not a comet.
Just a meteor.
Maybe 1mm in diameter.



posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 02:11 AM
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reply to post by alfa1
 


Never seen one that bright but works for me, thanks

A2d



posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 02:15 AM
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reply to post by Agree2Disagree
 


I have one too...I can see saturns rings sometimes.Check out stellariumstellarium.org



posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 05:33 AM
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Comets don't shoot across the sky. If it was that fast, then it was indeed a meteor leaving a burning/smoking trail in the upper atmosphere.



posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 07:18 AM
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It is impossible to say what you saw, but not impossible to eliminate some of the possibilities.
Was it a comet? No. Not possible.

Most people have the wrong idea about comets. They tend to think that comets move.
Well, yes, they do, but they are ALWAYS so far away that there NEVER is a perceptible motion even if you were to watch through a telescope all night.The apparent motion of the sun, stars and planets moving across the sky is faster than the motion of a comet.

Maybe it was a satellite? You can eliminate almost all satellites by the direction of travel. If the object moved from the east to the west, more than likely it was not a satellite. That direction is against the earth's rotation which makes it very hard to launch a rocket fast enough to counter that motion. So most satellites (in low orbit) are launched so that they move more or less from west to the east, in the direction that the shuttle and the ISS move. There are polar orbiting satellites that move north to south. (Maybe some move south to north?)

If the object was fleeting, disappeared in a second or less, it was likely a mini-meteor. If it continued out of sight as if you were watching a high jetliner but at a much faster rate, then it was probably something man or alien made. There is some exotic stuff moving around out there.



posted on Jun, 16 2013 @ 09:02 AM
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As our knowledgeable members have already said, what you are describing fits the description of a meteor, or perhaps even a "fireball", which is just a meteor that is brighter than most others - it would need to be around the brightness of Venus as seen in the night sky (-4 or -3 magnitude if it was seen near the horizon) to qualify.


Originally posted by Agree2Disagree
BTW, when I was on starry night just before going out to begin my viewing, it didn't say there were any events for viewing other than Io occultation


Every night tonnes of extra terrestrial material (most of it no larger than a grain of sand in size) enters our atmosphere, so meteors (AKA "shooting stars") are common. Many of these particles (known as "meteoroids" when they are in space or inside the atmosphere) are random, ie they do not belong to known meteor showers, but there are also meteor showers active at almost any given time of the year, though most of these are considered to be minor meteor showers. This time of year is actually one of the quietest times of the year for meteors and meteor showers, but as you found out, it's still possible to observe meteors.

Most of the meteoroids Earth encounters are fine dust-sized particles that are ejected from the surface of comets as they approach the Sun and "out-gassing" propels particles of comet away from the comet's surface, so you were probably not that far off with your guess that what you saw was a comet. This is what gives us our annual meteor showers. There are also particles and small chunks of asteroids (even small asteroids) that enter Earth's atmosphere on a regular basis, so comets are not the only source of meteors and fireballs.

If your experience the other night has wet your appetite, try spending a few hours (or ideally the whole night) observing during the peak of one of our major annual meteor showers. In a good year, and if you have a little luck, you can easily see a few hundred meteors during a night's observing. Often you will see a few bright fireballs too.

I would recommend either the Geminids in December, the Quadrantids in January or the Perseids in August which is looking to be one of the best showers this year. It's easy to observe a meteor shower (if the weather cooperates!), but if you do a few things, you will have a better experience and see more than if you don't plan ahead.

Firstly, get well away from man-made light pollution and find an observing site which has unobstructed views of the sky in all directions - the more sky you can see the more meteors you will see, and if it's a good dark-sky site you can double or triple or even quadruple the number of meteors you see compared to a light-polluted urban observing site.

Secondly, climb into a sleeping bag (or two if it's not Summer), lay down flat facing more or less directly up, and you will pick up more meteors than if you are standing or sitting. You will also be more comfortable and more likely to be able to stand observing for a few hours at a time. You will need to dress warmly on top of this. Ideally double up on everything - you can always easily remove cloths if you get too warm, but if you dress light, and get cold, you will quickly loose interest in observing! Find yourself a sun-bed (which goes down flat), or a camp-bed, or even an air-bed to lay down on.

Whilst you can do quite a lot to prepare, you can't always prepare for the sky clouding up (unless you can watch the weather forecast/check weather satellite data and then drive for a few hours to somewhere that is predicted to stay clear), and it often does if you are nearing the peak of a meteor shower. However, although you may miss a predicted peak, the nights either side of a meteor shower peak will often be quite good, and occasionally they may even have better meteor rates that what was predicted to be the peak night - sometimes the predictions are slightly off.

So it's often worth hedging your bets, and planning to observe for a few nights around peak. Doing it this way means you'll usually get to see at least a few meteors even if the peak gets clouded out. Don't be put of by a partially cloudy sky at the start of the night. It will often clear up later on, and most meteor showers produce higher rates towards the end of the night, so it's easy to miss out if you are not careful.

Also, sometimes it takes a few attempts at observing a meteor shower before you hit on a good one, so don't be put off if your first attempts are unfruitful. With patience you will always be rewarded eventually, and the rewards can sometimes be much more than you expect as meteor showers always have a certain degree of unpredictability.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 09:05 AM
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Originally posted by Aliensun
...Most people have the wrong idea about comets. They tend to think that comets move.
Well, yes, they do, but they are ALWAYS so far away that there NEVER is a perceptible motion even if you were to watch through a telescope all night.The apparent motion of the sun, stars and planets moving across the sky is faster than the motion of a comet.


Yes and no. While it is true that a comet can hang in the night sky for weeks at a time, it DOES have an apparent motion similar to the stars and planets. It would appear to move across the night sky (very slowly) similar to , say for example, Venus, wit that apparent motion mostly caused by the rotation of the Earth.

In addition, it's apparent motion relative to Venus, other planets, stars, and the sun would be slightly different than those bodies because the comet has its own orbital motion.

...But yeah -- It is correct to say that a comet will not shoot across the sky like a meteor or bolide/fireball, but will instead be visible and (practically) motionless in the night sky, night after night, for weeks.

I remember Comet Hale-Bopp in 1997 was first visible in the dusk sky just around sunset (and was bright enough to be visible even for a while right before sunset), but the comet set soon after the Sun. However, as the days and weeks went on, its apparent location in the sky relative to the Sun grew farther from the Sun until it was mostly visible in the sky long after sunset and into the night.


edit on 6/17/2013 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)






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