Objects in your sky: Comets

by Dominic Ford

Below is a list of the brightest few comets that are visible at present.

You are welcome to reproduce the text below for non-profit purposes, providing you credit In-The-Sky.org.

Comet name Mag Constellation Separation
from Sun
Trend Absolute magnitude
last updated
Comet name Mag Constellation Separation
from Sun
Trend Absolute magnitude
last updated
C/2017 T2 (PANSTARRS)10.4Taurus42°
Brightening
2 Apr 2019
C/2018 R3 (Lemmon)10.9Lynx20°
Fading
(peak at mag 9.6 on 4 Jun 2019)
2 Jul 2019
P/2008 Y12 (SOHO)11.6Sagittarius165°
Brightening
(peak at mag -3.1 on 10 Oct 2019)
Unknown
C/2018 N2 (ASASSN)11.6Aries72°
Brightening
(peak at mag 10.3 on 21 Oct 2019)
4 Feb 2019
168P/Hergenrother11.9Aries73°
Brightening
(peak at mag 11.5 on 23 Aug 2019)
15 Jan 2013
C/2018 W2 (Africano)12.0Camelopardalis51°
Brightening
(peak at mag 8.4 on 26 Sep 2019)
2 Jul 2019
260P/McNaught12.6Cetus104°
Brightening
(peak at mag 11.0 on 26 Sep 2019)
22 Dec 2012
167P/CINEOS12.6Crater72°
Fading
Unknown
C/2018 W1 (Catalina)12.6Vela65°
Fading
(peak at mag 11.4 on 25 May 2019)
3 Jun 2019
78P/Gehrels12.7Orion20°
Fading
24 Dec 2016
74P/Smirnova-Chernykh13.6Libra116°
Fading
29 Feb 2012
69P/Taylor13.7Cancer10°
Fading
Unknown
C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS)13.8Bootes88°
Fading
3 Jun 2019
68P/Klemola13.8Ophiuchus140°
Brightening
(peak at mag 13.6 on 31 Aug 2019)
Unknown
C/2017 M4 (ATLAS)13.8Centaurus105°
Fading
3 Jun 2019
289P/Blanpain14.1Aquarius122°
Brightening
(peak at mag 4.7 on 11 Jan 2020)
Unknown
P/2010 H2 (Vales)14.4Microscopium160°
Fading
(peak at mag 14.4 on 9 Jul 2019)
Unknown
C/2019 D1 (Flewelling)14.4Andromeda85°
Fading
3 Jun 2019
C/2016 M1 (PANSTARRS)14.4Canis Major53°
Fading
31 Oct 2018
C/2018 Y1 (Iwamoto)14.8Perseus41°
Fading
2 Apr 2019
38P/Stephan-Oterma14.9Leo48°
Fading
3 Mar 2019
C/2017 B3 (LINEAR)15.0Phoenix118°
Brightening
(peak at mag 15.0 on 21 Jul 2019)
Unknown
C/2010 U3 (Boattini)15.1Ursa Major54°
Fading
Unknown
29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann15.4Pisces94°
Brightening
(peak at mag 15.0 on 8 Oct 2019)
Unknown
123P/West-Hartley15.4Virgo69°
Fading
3 Jun 2019

The position of each comet is calculated from orbital elements published by the Minor Planet Center (MPC), and is typically known with a high degree of confidence.

Where possible, the brightnesses of comets are estimated from absolute magnitude values computed by the BAA Comet Section, based on the observations they receive. We prefer these to the Minor Planet Center's own magnitude estimates, since the latter are less often updated. Nonetheless, comets are intrinsically unpredictable objects, and magnitude estimates must always be taken with a pinch of salt.

Click on the names of individual comets to display ephemerides and finder charts.

Fairfield

Latitude:
Longitude:
Timezone:

41.14°N
73.26°W
EDT

Color scheme