Your Guide to the Solar System and the Night Sky
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public Observing fromLocation: Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt
north SunriseRise: 4:46  
clear_day Transit: 12:56  
SunsetSet: 21:07 south
sunny DaytimeWhat's Visible Now
Comets » 

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy

Altitude: 12.0°   Azimuth: 251.9°   Direction: West-South-West

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is currently in the constellation of Aquarius. The current Right Ascension of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is 22h 44m 53s and the Declination is -01° 32’ 56” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is 18.75 (JPL).

22h 44m 53s
-01° 32’ 56”

The observed values of Magnitude, Coma Diameter and Tail Length are derived from the most recent observation recorded at the Comet Observers Database. The value of Predicted Magnitude comes from the JPL Horizons ephemerides service and, in the case of comets, might be inaccurate given the highly dynamic and unpredictable behavior of these objects. When available, please refer to the Observed Magnitude value and consider the Predicted 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.

Today's rise, transit and set times of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy from Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 91.6°
Max altitude: 37.0°
Azimuth: 268.5°
  • 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt.
  • Right now it is placed in the West-South-West direction at an altitude of 12° above the horizon.
  • Given its current magnitude, 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is visible only through long exposure photography.
  • 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.

Available Resources

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy Position and Finder Charts

Below we provide Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy 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.

Finder chart of 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in Aquarius on June,04 2023
Map showing Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in Aquarius on June, 04 2023
Field of view: 50x30 degrees
View fullscreen
Finder chart of 135P/Shoemaker-Levy
Map showing Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in Aquarius on June, 04 2023
Field of view: 10x6 degrees
View fullscreen

Higher precision deep sky finder chart, 60 arcmin wide, showing where Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

RA: 22h 44m 53s
Dec: -01° 32’ 56”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy from Earth is currently 491,955,465 kilometers, equivalent to 3.288519 Astronomical Units. Light takes 27 minutes and 20.9868 seconds to travel from Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy and arrive to us.

27 minutes and 20.9868 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy 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.

Chart of the distance of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy from Earth in Astronomical Units (au)

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 135P/Shoemaker-Levy from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest Approach of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy to Earth

Between 1 January 2013 and 30 December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy to Earth happens on Sat May 28 2022 at a distance of 1.686005 Astronomical Units, or 252,222,725 kilometers:

Sat May 28 2022

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

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy Brightness and Light Curve

The following chart is the predicted light curve (visual magnitude as a function of time) of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy, 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.

Chart of the magnitude of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy as a function of time

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy at epoch 20 February 1997 00:00 UTC (JD: 2450500.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 0.29022851
Orbit inclination i 6.05058089°
Perihelion distance q 2.71688981 AU
406,440,931 km
Aphelion distance Q 4.93878488 AU
738,831,704 km
Semi-major axis a 3.82783735 AU
572,636,317 km
Orbital period period 7.4893 years
2,735.4491 days
Date of perihelion transit Tp 1999-Dec-10 12:02:32
2,451,523.0018 JD
Next perihelion transit 2007-Jun-06 22:49
2,454,258.4509 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 22.698033610268°
Longitude of the ascending node node 213.36198304826°
Mean anomaly M 225.43319859875°
Mean motion n 0.13160545°/day

Visualization of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy 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 135P/Shoemaker-Levy
View Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in the 3D Solar System Simulator

Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 135P/Shoemaker-Levy in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2023 May 28 22h 40m 57s -02° 06’ 02” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 May 29 22h 41m 31s -02° 01’ 19” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 May 30 22h 42m 05s -01° 56’ 42” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 May 31 22h 42m 38s -01° 52’ 09” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 Jun 01 22h 43m 09s -01° 47’ 40” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 Jun 02 22h 43m 41s -01° 43’ 17” 18.76 Aquarius
2023 Jun 03 22h 44m 12s -01° 38’ 57” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 04 22h 44m 40s -01° 34’ 42” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 05 22h 45m 10s -01° 30’ 33” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 06 22h 45m 37s -01° 26’ 29” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 07 22h 46m 04s -01° 22’ 28” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 08 22h 46m 29s -01° 18’ 34” 18.75 Aquarius
2023 Jun 09 22h 46m 54s -01° 14’ 44” 18.74 Aquarius
2023 Jun 10 22h 47m 18s -01° 11’ 00” 18.74 Aquarius