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Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is currently in the constellation of Hercules. The current Right Ascension of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is 18h 23m 45s and the Declination is +23° 41’ 05” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is 24.92 (JPL).

Summary of key facts about Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks [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]:

18h 23m 45s
+23° 41’ 05”
  • 12P/Pons-Brooks is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change].
  • It is visible looking in the East-South-East direction at an altitude of 50° above the horizon.
  • Given its current magnitude, 12P/Pons-Brooks is visible only through long exposure photography.
  • See also 12P/Pons-Brooks rise and set times.
  • Go to interactive sky chart

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 12P/Pons-Brooks available on TheSkyLive:

Available Resources

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks Position and Finder Charts

Below we provide Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 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 12P/Pons-Brooks in Hercules on May, 08 2021
Field of view: 50x30 degrees
View fullscreen
Map showing Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks in Hercules on May, 08 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 12P/Pons-Brooks is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

RA: 18h 23m 45s
Dec: +23° 41’ 05”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks from Earth is currently 1,428,910,878 kilometers, equivalent to 9.551679 Astronomical Units. Light takes 1 hours, 19 minutes and 26.3336 seconds to travel from Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks and arrive to us.

1 hours, 19 minutes and 26.3336 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 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 12P/Pons-Brooks 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 12P/Pons-Brooks from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest approach of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks to Earth

Between January 2013 and December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks to Earth happens on Sun Aug 28 2095 at a distance of 1.525129 Astronomical Units, or 228,156,023 kilometers:

Sun Aug 28 2095

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

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks brightness

The current visual magnitude of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is 24.92.


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 12P/Pons-Brooks, 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 12P/Pons-Brooks between January 2013 and December 2100

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 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 12P/Pons-Brooks rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 66.3°
Max altitude: 62.2°
Azimuth: 293.7°

The rise and set times are defined as the time at which the upper limb of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 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 12P/Pons-Brooks Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks at epoch 01 January 1970 00:00 UTC (JD: 2439405.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 0.95422024
Orbit inclination i 74.70374931°
Perihelion distance q 0.77801865 AU
116,389,934 km
Aphelion distance Q 33.21161646 AU
4,968,387,115 km
Semi-major axis a 16.99481756 AU
2,542,388,525 km
Orbital period period 70.0600 years
25,590.1709 days
Date of perihelion transit Tp 1954-May-23 04:13:20
2,434,885.6759 JD
Next perihelion transit 2024-Jun-14 08:19
2,460,475.8469 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 199.09363409638°
Longitude of the ascending node node 255.95951327526°
Mean anomaly M 63.58443906645°
Mean motion n 0.01406790°/day

Visualization of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 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!

Orbit Diagram of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks
View Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks in the 3D Solar System Simulator

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2021 May 01 18h 25m 23s +23° 11’ 27” 24.97 Hercules
2021 May 02 18h 25m 12s +23° 15’ 47” 24.97 Hercules
2021 May 03 18h 24m 57s +23° 20’ 03” 24.96 Hercules
2021 May 04 18h 24m 45s +23° 24’ 20” 24.95 Hercules
2021 May 05 18h 24m 29s +23° 28’ 32” 24.94 Hercules
2021 May 06 18h 24m 15s +23° 32’ 44” 24.94 Hercules
2021 May 07 18h 24m 01s +23° 36’ 51” 24.93 Hercules
2021 May 08 18h 23m 45s +23° 40’ 58” 24.92 Hercules
2021 May 09 18h 23m 30s +23° 45’ 02” 24.91 Hercules
2021 May 10 18h 23m 13s +23° 49’ 02” 24.91 Hercules
2021 May 11 18h 22m 57s +23° 53’ 00” 24.90 Hercules
2021 May 12 18h 22m 40s +23° 56’ 57” 24.89 Hercules
2021 May 13 18h 22m 23s +24° 00’ 50” 24.88 Hercules
2021 May 14 18h 22m 05s +24° 04’ 39” 24.88 Hercules