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Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON)

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Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) Position

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) is currently in the constellation of Lynx. The current Right Ascension is 07h 36m 33s and the Declination is +37° 52’ 31”.

07h 36m 33s
+37° 52’ 31”

Simplified sky chart showing where Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) is right now in the sky with respect to the brightest stars and constellations (see fuillscreen Online Planetarium)

Map showing Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) in Lynx on November, 22 2019
Field of view: 60x30 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]

Hihgher precision deep sky finder chart showing where Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) is right now (view fullscreen)

C/2012 S1 (ISON)
RA: 07h 36m 33s
Dec: +37° 52’ 31”
Deep sky finder chart for Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON)
Field of view: 60x40 arcmins
View fullscreen

Also check out Where is Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON)?, a page that provides all the information needed to find Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) in the sky and additional links to sky charts.

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) Distance

The distance of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) from Earth is currently 2,764,959,165 kilometers, equivalent to 18.482610 Astronomical Units. Light takes 2 hours, 33 minutes and 42.9110 seconds to travel from Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) and arrive to us.

2 hours, 33 minutes and 42.9110 seconds

The following chart shows the distance of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON) 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON) from Earth is also available as a real time updated value in the Live Position and Data Tracker.

Closest approach of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) to Earth

Between January 2013 and December 2100 the closest approach of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) to Earth happens on Fri Dec 27 2013 at a distance of 0.43060397 Astronomical Units, or 64,417,437 kilometers:

Fri Dec 27 2013

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

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) brightness

The current visual magnitude of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) is -100.00.


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 behvior 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON), 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON) between January 2013 and December 2100

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON) rise, transit and set times from Greenwich, United Kingdom [change] are the following (all times relative to the local timezone Europe/London):

Azimuth: 52.1°
Max altitude: 76.4°
Azimuth: 307.9°
Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) is above the horizon from Greenwich, United Kingdom

The rise and set times are defined as the time at which the upper limb of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) touches the horizon, consideting the effect of the atmospheric refraction. As the atmoshpere conditions cannot be modeled precisely the times reported here should be considered correct with an approximation of few minutes.

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) Orbital Elements

The following table lists the orbital elements of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) at epoch 03 December 2013 00:00 UTC (JD: 2456630.5). Source: JPL Small-Body Database

Element Symbol Value
Orbit eccentricity e 1.00020100
Orbit inclination i 62.40397752°
Perihelion distance q 0.01245259 AU
1,862,881 km
Aphelion distance Q n.a.
Semi-major axis a n.a.
Orbital period period n.a.
Date of perihelion transit Tp 2013-Nov-28 18:41:16
2,456,625.2787 JD
Argument of perihelion peri 345.53124062058°
Longitude of the ascending node node 295.65203155°
Mean anomaly M 0.010553658639203°
Mean motion n 0.00202125°/day

Visualization of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) Orbit

This 3d orbit diagram is a feature of our 3D Solar System Simulator and shows the orbit of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) with respect of the Sun and the orbits of the major planets. The position of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) 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 C/2012 S1 (ISON)
View Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) in the 3D Solar System Simulator

Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) 15 Days Ephemeris

The following table lists the ephemerides of Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) computed for the past and next 7 days, with a 24 hours interval. Click on each row of the table to locate Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) in our Online Planetarium at the chosen date.

Date Right AscensionR.A. DeclinationDec. MagnitudeMag Constellation
2019 Nov 15 07h 37m 46s +37° 44’ 35” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 16 07h 37m 39s +37° 45’ 34” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 17 07h 37m 29s +37° 46’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 18 07h 37m 20s +37° 47’ 35” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 19 07h 37m 12s +37° 48’ 37” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 20 07h 37m 02s +37° 49’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 21 07h 36m 52s +37° 50’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 22 07h 36m 42s +37° 51’ 37” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 23 07h 36m 33s +37° 52’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 24 07h 36m 23s +37° 53’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 25 07h 36m 11s +37° 54’ 37” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 26 07h 36m 01s +37° 55’ 36” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 27 07h 35m 49s +37° 56’ 35” N.A. Lynx
2019 Nov 28 07h 35m 39s +37° 57’ 33” N.A. Lynx