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🌎  Observing from: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 is currently in the constellation of Cetus. The current Right Ascension of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 is 00h 09m 48s and the Declination is -06° 31’ 27” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom [change]). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 is 24.73 (JPL).

Summary of key facts about Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 [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]:

00h 09m 48s
-06° 31’ 27”

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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 available on TheSkyLive:

Available Resources

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 Position and Finder Charts

Below we provide Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 in Cetus on January, 29 2023
Field of view: 50x30 degrees
View fullscreen
Map showing Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 in Cetus on January, 29 2023
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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3
RA: 00h 09m 48s
Dec: -06° 31’ 27”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 from Earth is currently 393,436,827 kilometers, equivalent to 2.629963 Astronomical Units. Light takes 21 minutes and 52.3640 seconds to travel from Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 and arrive to us.

21 minutes and 52.3640 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest approach of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 to Earth

Between January 2013 and December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 to Earth happens on Wed Aug 5 2048 at a distance of 0.115627 Astronomical Units, or 17,297,528 kilometers:

Wed Aug 5 2048

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

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 brightness

The current visual magnitude of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 is 24.73.


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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3, 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 between January 2013 and December 2100

Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 96.5°
Max altitude: 32.1°
Azimuth: 263.6°

The rise and set times are defined as the time at which the upper limb of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 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 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2023 Jan 22 23h 56m 09s -08° 24’ 25” 24.49 Aquarius
2023 Jan 23 23h 58m 01s -08° 08’ 49” 24.52 Cetus
2023 Jan 24 23h 59m 53s -07° 53’ 21” 24.55 Cetus
2023 Jan 25 00h 01m 45s -07° 37’ 55” 24.59 Cetus
2023 Jan 26 00h 03m 37s -07° 22’ 37” 24.62 Cetus
2023 Jan 27 00h 05m 26s -07° 07’ 24” 24.65 Cetus
2023 Jan 28 00h 07m 17s -06° 52’ 18” 24.69 Cetus
2023 Jan 29 00h 09m 06s -06° 37’ 17” 24.72 Cetus
2023 Jan 30 00h 10m 54s -06° 22’ 20” 24.75 Cetus
2023 Jan 31 00h 12m 42s -06° 07’ 31” 24.78 Pisces
2023 Feb 01 00h 14m 30s -05° 52’ 45” 24.81 Pisces
2023 Feb 02 00h 16m 17s -05° 38’ 07” 24.84 Pisces
2023 Feb 03 00h 18m 03s -05° 23’ 33” 24.88 Pisces
2023 Feb 04 00h 19m 50s -05° 09’ 05” 24.91 Pisces