Comet Section        


March 5, 2021 – ALPO Comet News for March 2021

Not sure if we’ll have any comets brighter than 10th magnitude this month though there are two contenders. C/2020 R4 (ATLAS) may break the magnitude 10 barrier at the end of March but this is uncertain as the comet has not been observed since early January (due to being too close to the Sun). Newly discovered C/2021 D1 (SWAN) is close to the magnitude 10 barrier but it appears likely that it is as bright as it will get at 10-11th magnitude. In the meantime, there are many other comets between magnitude 10 and 13 that are good targets for CCD imagers and large aperture visual observers. Though still around 18th magnitude, imagers are encouraged to monitor C/2020 A1 (Leonard) which may become a nice object in December.

The monthly ALPO Comet News PDF can be found here. A shorter version of this report is posted on a dedicated Cloudy Nights forum. All are encouraged to join the discussion over at Cloudy Nights.

- Carl Hergenrother

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