Comet 41P/Tuttle passes the Owl Nebula

Comet 41P/Tuttle, The Owl Nebula M97 and M108
Credit: Lee Phillips

On Tuesday 21 March, Comet 41P/Tuttle-Giacobini-Kresak passed close to the Owl Nebula (M97) and the Surfboard Galaxy (M108). The above image taken by Lee Phillips shows all three objects in the same field of view. The comet which now seems to have brightened further to around magnitude 8 still lacks signs of a tail but the coma is clearly visible. There will be another opportunity tonight (22nd March) to image the Comet in the same field of view as the Owl Nebula and Surfboard Galaxy. The 1.4km object is now set to pass right through the center of the plough asterism in the constellation of Ursa Major over the coming days. Closest approach to Earth occurs on 01 April 2017.

Comet 41p/Tuttle through the Plough
Click to enlarge
Comet 41P finder chart through Spring
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theskylive.com comet data on Comet 41P

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