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Comet Holmes and Oak Trees

By: Doug Zubenel

 

Region: Americas

Site: Kansas - USA

Date: 2007 November 13

On October 23/24, 2007, the 17th comet known to be periodic - discovered accidentally by Londoner Edwin Holmes while observing the Andromeda galaxy on the evening of November 7, 1892 - underwent an explosive outburst and rose from the 17th to 3rd magnitude (half a million times brighter) in less than 24 hours! Observers and photographers all over the world were taken by complete surprise. The comet continued to brighten and spread until it was larger than the sun! As noted by the photographer "This image was made on a fine autumn evening from the backyard of my home near De Soto, Kansas, and features the beautiful comet floating beyond two of our tall Oak trees near the cluster of stars in the constellation of Perseus known as the Alpha Persei Group. On this evening, the comet was at a distance of 1.627 AU from Earth - more than 151 million miles!" Doug Zubenel

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