Comet Gerradd C/2009 P1, My first comet

Comet Gerradd was discovered by G. J. Gerradd on August 13, 2009 in Australia’s Siding Spring Observatory.You can find out more about C2009 p1‘s creator on Wikipedia.

Here you see the comet visually near the galaxy NGC 6015 (upper right corner) in the constellation of Draco. Notice that the comet sports two tails, this is because the gas that vaporizes off the comet due to the sun’s heating is being blown by the solar wind in one direction while the particles of debris and dust fall off in a different direction since they are not affected by the solar winds as much.

In the main image the comet is about as close to earth as it was going to get and is well inside the orbital distance of Jupiter, about half way between that distance and the orbit of Mars, sitting above the orbital plane of the planets. The smaller images show comet Gerradd moving across the frame in its travels across the sky.Image of Comet Gerradd  As you can tell I imaged comet Gerradd for over an hour. It was also a wonderful comet to view with binoculars. There were several of us out that night and I was certainly not the only one imaging the comet.

I hope you enjoyed Comet Gerradd!

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