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Comet 126P/IRAS

Comet 126P/IRAS is currently in the constellation of Centaurus. The current Right Ascension of Comet 126P/IRAS is 12h 25m 03s and the Declination is -35° 43’ 10” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 126P/IRAS is 25.86 (JPL).

Summary of key facts about Comet 126P/IRAS [tip: you can also create a Quick Access page for this data if you access it frequently and would like to have a simpler view]:

12h 25m 03s
-35° 43’ 10”
Centaurus
25.86

If you need to access this information frequently for your observations, you can create a simple customized Quick Access page, so that you can easily bookmark it in your browser favorites or add a shortcut to your mobile phones' home screen.

Additional information about Comet 126P/IRAS available on TheSkyLive:

Available Resources

Comet 126P/IRAS Position and Finder Charts

Below we provide Comet 126P/IRAS finder charts showing where the object is right now in the sky with respect to the brightest stars. The first finder chart has a field of view of 50 degrees, while the second one has a field of view of 10 degrees. Click on each finder chart to access a full screen interactive Online Planetarium.

Map showing Comet 126P/IRAS in Centaurus on May, 07 2021
Field of view: 50x30 degrees
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Map showing Comet 126P/IRAS in Centaurus on May, 07 2021
Field of view: 10x6 degrees
View fullscreen
 = visible to the naked eye
 = binocular, brighter than 10th magnitude
= current altitude ≥ 30°   = current altitude < 30°   = below the horizon
Location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]

Higher precision deep sky finder chart, 60 arcmin wide, showing where Comet 126P/IRAS is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

126P/IRAS
RA: 12h 25m 03s
Dec: -35° 43’ 10”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 126P/IRAS
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 126P/IRAS?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 126P/IRAS in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 126P/IRAS Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 126P/IRAS from Earth is currently 798,621,568 kilometers, equivalent to 5.338455 Astronomical Units. Light takes 44 minutes and 23.9148 seconds to travel from Comet 126P/IRAS and arrive to us.

798,621,568
5.338455
44 minutes and 23.9148 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 126P/IRAS from Earth as a function of time. In the chart the distance data is measured in Astronomical Units and sampled with an interval of 1 day.

Distance of Comet 126P/IRAS from Earth between January 2013 and December 2100

The value of the reported distance might be somewhat inaccurate around the times of closest approach for objects passing extremely close to Earth. The value of the distance of 126P/IRAS from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest approach of Comet 126P/IRAS to Earth

Between January 2013 and December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 126P/IRAS to Earth happens on Sun Sep 21 2036 at a distance of 0.789418 Astronomical Units, or 118,095,233 kilometers:

Sun Sep 21 2036
118,095,233
0.789418

NOTE: values for the closest approach are computed with a sampling interval of 1 day.

Comet 126P/IRAS brightness

The current visual magnitude of Comet 126P/IRAS is 25.86.

25.86
-
-

The observed magnitude and coma diameter values are derived from the Comet Observers Database by averaging the values reported in recent observations (more recent than 4 days), when available. The Estimated Magnitude comes from the JPL Horizons ephemerides service and might be inaccurate given the highly dynamic and unpredictable behavior of comets. When available, please refer to the Observed Magnitude value and consider the Estimated Magnitude as a directional indication. We acknowledge with thanks the comet observations from the COBS Comet Observation Database contributed by observers worldwide and used in this table to report recent comet observations.

The following chart is the predicted light curve (visual magnitude as a function of time) of Comet 126P/IRAS, according to the most recent ephemerides data. Magnitude data is sampled with a 2 days interval and there might be inaccuracies for objects changing brightness very rapidly during the course of a few days. For comets there could be large discrepancies between the observed and predicted brightness because of their highly dynamic behaviour.

Predicted magnitude of Comet 126P/IRAS between January 2013 and December 2100

Comet 126P/IRAS rise and set times

Location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]
Latitude: 51° 28’ 47” N
Longitude: 0° 00’ 00” E
Timezone: Europe/London

Today's Comet 126P/IRAS rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 125.7°
Max altitude: 2.8°
Azimuth: 234.3°

The rise and set times are defined as the time at which the upper limb of Comet 126P/IRAS touches the horizon, considering the effect of the atmospheric refraction. As the atmospheric conditions cannot be modeled precisely the times reported here should be considered correct with an approximation of few minutes.

Comet 126P/IRAS Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet 126P/IRAS at epoch 12 March 2013 00:00 UTC (JD: 2456364.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 0.69577250
Orbit inclination i 45.80272010°
Perihelion distance q 1.71781337 AU
256,981,223 km
Aphelion distance Q 9.57513917 AU
1,432,420,435 km
Semi-major axis a 5.64647627 AU
844,700,829 km
Orbital period period 13.4200 years
4,900.7741 days
Date of perihelion transit Tp 2010-Feb-22 03:26:49
2,455,249.6436 JD
Next perihelion transit 2023-Jul-24 22:01
2,460,150.4178 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 356.77489738715°
Longitude of the ascending node node 357.79932106627°
Mean anomaly M 81.894876423209°
Mean motion n 0.07345778°/day

Visualization of Comet 126P/IRAS Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet 126P/IRAS with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet 126P/IRAS and the planets along their orbits in this diagram accurately represents the current configuration of the objects in the Solar System. This is an experimental feature and it requires a WebGL enabled browser. Please provide us feedback!

Comet 126P/IRAS 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 126P/IRAS computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 126P/IRAS in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2021 Apr 30 12h 29m 26s -36° 07’ 55” 25.90 Centaurus
2021 May 01 12h 28m 49s -36° 04’ 41” 25.89 Centaurus
2021 May 02 12h 28m 10s -36° 01’ 22” 25.89 Centaurus
2021 May 03 12h 27m 33s -35° 57’ 59” 25.88 Centaurus
2021 May 04 12h 26m 57s -35° 54’ 33” 25.88 Centaurus
2021 May 05 12h 26m 21s -35° 51’ 02” 25.87 Centaurus
2021 May 06 12h 25m 45s -35° 47’ 30” 25.87 Centaurus
2021 May 07 12h 25m 09s -35° 43’ 54” 25.86 Centaurus
2021 May 08 12h 24m 36s -35° 40’ 14” 25.86 Centaurus
2021 May 09 12h 24m 02s -35° 36’ 33” 25.85 Centaurus
2021 May 10 12h 23m 29s -35° 32’ 48” 25.85 Centaurus
2021 May 11 12h 22m 57s -35° 29’ 02” 25.84 Centaurus
2021 May 12 12h 22m 24s -35° 25’ 14” 25.84 Centaurus
2021 May 13 12h 21m 54s -35° 21’ 23” 25.83 Centaurus