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Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON)

Object information

Comet ISON (C/2012 S1) was discovered by V. Nevski and A. Novichonok on September 21 2012. The name ISON comes from "International Scientific Optical Network" which is the name of the observatory used to make the discovery.

ISON reached its perihelion on November 28 2013 and according to current data (early December 2013) it's nucleus went almost completely destroyed by the intense heat caused by the close approach to the Sun's surface.

Please note. We are still showing Comet ISON on TheSkyLive.com because, even if it's nucleus has been destroyed, what remains of it will continue moving along the same predicted orbit, and hopefullly will be visible with larger telescopes. While the predicted position should be accurate, the value of the magnitude is currently not correct, since it's computation is still based on the assumption that the comet would have survived the close encounter with the Sun.

This finder chart shows an accurate view of the star field surrounding the comet, simulating a telesopic view. It is obtained from the Digitized Sky Surcvey 2, which is a photographic archive covering large part of the sky.

The chart covers an area of 45x30 arc minutes, which is roughly equivalent of full Moon's apparent size.

Latest updates

A high precision photographic sky map showing the position of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) in real time.

Current close conjunctions

List of bright objects (stars brighter than magnitude 9.0 and galaxies brighter than magmitude 14.0) close to Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) (less than 1.5 degrees):

TypeNameMagnitudeArDec
StarHIP 271926.551405h 45m 49s+40° 30’ 26”
StarHIP 274548.568805h 48m 47s+39° 54’ 43”
StarHIP 274586.726205h 48m 51s+39° 32’ 01”
StarHIP 274834.420205h 49m 10s+39° 10’ 52”
StarHIP 275538.943805h 50m 03s+39° 34’ 34”
StarHIP 276733.860605h 51m 29s+39° 08’ 54”
StarHIP 277027.82905h 51m 56s+39° 33’ 47”
StarHIP 277177.912205h 52m 09s+40° 57’ 47”
StarHIP 277618.091205h 52m 30s+40° 08’ 55”
StarHIP 277776.400205h 52m 39s+39° 34’ 29”
StarHIP 277938.701605h 52m 53s+39° 11’ 39”
StarHIP 278018.927405h 52m 59s+39° 14’ 40”
StarHIP 278538.079605h 53m 34s+40° 25’ 12”
StarHIP 278597.955205h 53m 38s+39° 06’ 18”
StarHIP 278937.853805h 54m 06s+40° 23’ 17”
StarHIP 280546.63605h 55m 56s+41° 19’ 24”
StarHIP 281138.84305h 56m 32s+39° 11’ 27”
StarHIP 281978.607605h 57m 30s+39° 58’ 09”
StarHIP 282318.543405h 57m 52s+40° 47’ 52”
StarHIP 282637.89205h 58m 18s+40° 47’ 12”
StarHIP 283387.275605h 59m 17s+40° 02’ 00”

Astronomy databases

This online sky chart is created using the following astronomy databases and services:

  1. The Digitized Sky Survey, a photographic survey of the whole sky created using images from different telescopes, including the Oschin Schmidt Telescope on Palomar Mountain
  2. The Hipparcos Star Catalogue, containing more than 100.000 bright stars
  3. The PGC 2003 Catalogue, containing information about 1 million galaxies
  4. The GSC 2.3 Catalogue, containing information about more than 2 billion stars and galaxies
Please see the acknowledgements section.

About the data, and how to use it

TheSkyLive.com offers live information, ephemeris computations, astronomical sky charts for the most important Solar System objects. You can use the live position charts during your observation sessions, to point your telescope and identify the object on the sky background. The ephemeris computations feature can be used to plan your astronomical observations in the future.

Please note: we aim to provide high quality data obtained from the JPL Horizons ephemeris service. Please keep in mind that for objects like comets, there might be high discrepancies between the magnitude information we are showing here and the actual value. This happens because comets' magnitude is highly influenced by physical phenomena which can be hardly modelled and calculated in advance.

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