“An imperfect account of a comet…”

to quote Caroline Herschel.

There’s a buzz in the media over the rare green comet that’s whizzing past us right now. It’s fuelled in part by the colour (almost certainly not visible to the eye (especially from light polluted regions)), and in part by spectacular images from big telescopes.

(Image credit: Michael Jaeger)

I like comets, and try to observe them where possible, my last few have been rather faint fuzz-balls only visible though my telescope.

Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF), to give it its proper name, is just about visible to the naked eye (though you won’t see the colour) in London. Monday evening, the comet was predicted to rise above the neighbouring houses by about 10pm, so I headed out to the garden with a tripod and my phone (my telescope is in for repair).

The result is rather underwhelming. I had to compare the photo with various prediction images and plate solved images to even guess at where the comet is. I’ve outlined the faint smudge I believe is the comet in the image.

(Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) (maybe))

I’ll try again as soon as we get a clear night.