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Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR is currently in the constellation of Lynx. The current Right Ascension of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR is 07h 40m 59s and the Declination is +36° 03’ 48” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR is 18.69 (JPL) while the latest observed magnitude is 15.6 (COBS).

Summary of key facts about Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR [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]:

07h 40m 59s
+36° 03’ 48”
  • 156P/Russell-LINEAR is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change].
  • It is visible looking in the West direction at an altitude of 53° above the horizon.
  • Given its current magnitude, 156P/Russell-LINEAR is visible only through long exposure photography.
  • See also 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR available on TheSkyLive:

Available Resources

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR Position and Finder Charts

Below we provide Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR in Lynx on May, 17 2021
Field of view: 50x30 degrees
View fullscreen
Map showing Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR in Lynx on May, 17 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

RA: 07h 40m 59s
Dec: +36° 03’ 48”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR from Earth is currently 408,879,734 kilometers, equivalent to 2.733192 Astronomical Units. Light takes 22 minutes and 43.8760 seconds to travel from Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR and arrive to us.

22 minutes and 43.8760 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest approach of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR to Earth

Between January 2013 and December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR to Earth happens on Thu Oct 29 2099 at a distance of 0.380005 Astronomical Units, or 56,847,940 kilometers:

Thu Oct 29 2099

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

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR brightness

The current visual magnitude of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR is 18.69.


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 156P/Russell-LINEAR, 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR between January 2013 and December 2100

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 53.9°
Max altitude: 74.6°
Azimuth: 306.2°

The rise and set times are defined as the time at which the upper limb of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR at epoch 20 February 2020 00:00 UTC (JD: 2458900.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 0.61498336
Orbit inclination i 17.26506317°
Perihelion distance q 1.33307986 AU
199,425,910 km
Aphelion distance Q 5.59171105 AU
836,508,068 km
Semi-major axis a 3.46239546 AU
517,966,989 km
Orbital period period 6.4400 years
2,353.2249 days
Date of perihelion transit Tp 2020-Nov-17 19:24:26
2,459,171.3086 JD
Next perihelion transit 2027-Apr-29 00:48
2,461,524.5335 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 0.36371500358013°
Longitude of the ascending node node 35.408983463617°
Mean anomaly M 318.57127346945°
Mean motion n 0.15298155°/day

Visualization of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 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 156P/Russell-LINEAR
View Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR in the 3D Solar System Simulator

Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 156P/Russell-LINEAR in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2021 May 10 07h 23m 02s +37° 03’ 42” 18.47 Auriga
2021 May 11 07h 25m 22s +36° 56’ 16” 18.50 Auriga
2021 May 12 07h 27m 42s +36° 48’ 46” 18.53 Auriga
2021 May 13 07h 30m 02s +36° 41’ 11” 18.56 Auriga
2021 May 14 07h 32m 20s +36° 33’ 32” 18.58 Lynx
2021 May 15 07h 34m 37s +36° 25’ 47” 18.61 Lynx
2021 May 16 07h 36m 55s +36° 18’ 01” 18.64 Lynx
2021 May 17 07h 39m 11s +36° 10’ 09” 18.67 Lynx
2021 May 18 07h 41m 26s +36° 02’ 13” 18.70 Lynx
2021 May 19 07h 43m 41s +35° 54’ 15” 18.72 Lynx
2021 May 20 07h 45m 56s +35° 46’ 13” 18.75 Lynx
2021 May 21 07h 48m 10s +35° 38’ 07” 18.78 Lynx
2021 May 22 07h 50m 21s +35° 29’ 57” 18.80 Lynx
2021 May 23 07h 52m 33s +35° 21’ 43” 18.83 Lynx