We use cookies to deliver essential features and to measure their performance. By using this site you accept our Privacy Policies.
A Complete Guide to the Solar System and the Night Sky
Your support helps us pay the server bills » Donate
public Observing fromLocation: Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt
SunriseRise: 6:35  
clear_day Transit: 12:10  
SunsetSet: 17:45
sunny DaytimeWhat's Visible Now?
Comets » 

Comet 8P/Tuttle

Altitude: -2.5°   Azimuth: 238.9°   Direction: West-South-West

Comet 8P/Tuttle is a periodic comet that orbits the Sun once every 13.6 years. It was discovered by American astronomer Horace Parnell Tuttle on May 3, 1858. The comet has a highly elliptical orbit, with an aphelion distance of about 10.4 AU and a perihelion distance of about 1.02 AU. It was originally classified as a Jupiter-family comet (even though it does not fit the most modern classification criteria), meaning its orbit is strongly influenced by the gravity of Jupiter.

Comet 8P/Tuttle is currently in the constellation of Sagittarius, at a distance of 1,151,216,215 kilometers from Earth.

Finder chart of 8P/Tuttle in Sagittarius on March,05 2024
Map showing Comet 8P/Tuttle in Sagittarius on March, 05 2024. Field of view: 50x30 degrees
View interactive star map
The current Right Ascension of Comet 8P/Tuttle is 18h 38m 21s and the Declination is -20° 51’ 31” (topocentric coordinates computed for the selected location: Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt). The current estimated magnitude of Comet 8P/Tuttle is 22.93 (JPL).

18h 38m 21s
-20° 51’ 31”

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 8P/Tuttle from Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 110.9°
Max altitude: 17.7°
Azimuth: 249.1°
  • 8P/Tuttle is below the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom edit_location_alt.
  • Given its current magnitude, 8P/Tuttle 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.

Additional Resources

Comet 8P/Tuttle Position and Finder Charts

Finder chart of 8P/Tuttle
Map showing Comet 8P/Tuttle in Sagittarius on March, 05 2024
Field of view: 10x6 degrees
View fullscreen

Higher precision deep sky finder chart, 60 arcmin wide, showing where Comet 8P/Tuttle is right now. Click on the image to see a more detailed fullscreen tracker view.

RA: 18h 38m 21s
Dec: -20° 51’ 31”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet 8P/Tuttle
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet 8P/Tuttle?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet 8P/Tuttle in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet 8P/Tuttle Distance from Earth

The distance of Comet 8P/Tuttle from Earth is currently 1,151,216,215 kilometers, equivalent to 7.695405 Astronomical Units. Light takes 1 hours, 4 minutes and 0.0440 seconds to travel from Comet 8P/Tuttle and arrive to us.

1 hours, 4 minutes and 0.0440 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet 8P/Tuttle 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 8P/Tuttle 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 8P/Tuttle from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest Approach of Comet 8P/Tuttle to Earth

Between 1 January 2013 and 30 December 2100, the closest approach of Comet 8P/Tuttle to Earth happens on Mon Dec 28 2048 at a distance of 0.175435 Astronomical Units, or 26,244,724 kilometers:

Mon Dec 28 2048

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

Comet 8P/Tuttle Brightness and Light Curve

The following chart is the predicted light curve (visual magnitude as a function of time) of Comet 8P/Tuttle, 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 8P/Tuttle as a function of time

Comet 8P/Tuttle Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet 8P/Tuttle at epoch 22 August 2008 00:00 UTC (JD: 2454701.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 0.81978762
Orbit inclination i 54.98196883°
Perihelion distance q 1.02726309 AU
153,676,372 km
Aphelion distance Q 10.37331963 AU
1,551,826,532 km
Semi-major axis a 5.70029136 AU
852,751,452 km
Orbital period period 13.6099 years
4,971.0028 days
Date of perihelion transit Tp 2008-Jan-27 00:25:56
2,454,492.5180 JD
Next perihelion transit 2021-Sep-06 00:29
2,459,463.5208 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 207.51151750851°
Longitude of the ascending node node 270.34216157066°
Mean anomaly M 15.13447433004°
Mean motion n 0.07242000°/day

Visualization of Comet 8P/Tuttle Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet 8P/Tuttle with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet 8P/Tuttle 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 8P/Tuttle 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet 8P/Tuttle computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet 8P/Tuttle in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2024 Feb 27 18h 36m 07s -21° 04’ 13” 22.94 Sagittarius
2024 Feb 28 18h 36m 27s -21° 02’ 31” 22.94 Sagittarius
2024 Feb 29 18h 36m 46s -21° 00’ 51” 22.94 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 01 18h 37m 04s -20° 59’ 08” 22.94 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 02 18h 37m 22s -20° 57’ 26” 22.94 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 03 18h 37m 39s -20° 55’ 45” 22.93 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 04 18h 37m 55s -20° 54’ 03” 22.93 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 05 18h 38m 12s -20° 52’ 22” 22.93 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 06 18h 38m 29s -20° 50’ 39” 22.93 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 07 18h 38m 44s -20° 48’ 57” 22.93 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 08 18h 38m 58s -20° 47’ 16” 22.92 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 09 18h 39m 12s -20° 45’ 33” 22.92 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 10 18h 39m 26s -20° 43’ 51” 22.92 Sagittarius
2024 Mar 11 18h 39m 41s -20° 42’ 10” 22.92 Sagittarius