C/2012 K5 Linear is a comet with a hyperbolic orbit that came from outside our solar system and about a week ago made its closest approach to the Sun. It is now also making its closest and brightest approach to Earth (roughly between the orbits of Earth and Mars) and is moving very rapidly from above the solar system’s orbital plane to below it. C/2012 K5 presently rises about an hour before Gemini’s Castor and Pollux. It is in the constellation Auriga and heading west southwest towards Taurus. The comet is expected to fade rapidly by the middle of January so now is a good time to observe it. Comet C/2012 K5 Linear will then steadily make its way back out to the deep reaches of space and will never be seen again.
The upper three minute image was taken with an SBIG ST10XME camera and an Astrophysics 5” f8 refractor at a focal length of 1,016mm. The bottom 1 minute image was taken with a Nikon D7000 camera at ISO6400 and a Borg 77ED f5.5 refractor at a focal length of 425mm.
Date Imaged :
January 1, 2013
Stardust Observatory, Baguio