picture, Enter linuxastronomy.org website.

Andromeda (And)
Aquila (Aql) (eagle)
Auriga (Aur) (Charioteer)
Bootes (Boo) (herdsman)
Cancer (Cnc) (crab)
Canes Venatici
Canes Venatici (CVn) (hunting dogs)
Canis Major
Canis Major (CMa) (big dog)
Canis Minor
Canis Minor (CMi) (lesser dog)
Capricornus (Cap) (sea goat)
Cassiopeia (Cas)
Centaurus (Cen) (centaur)
Cepheus (Cep
Corvus (Crv) (Crow)
Corona Borealis
Corona Borealis (CrB) (Northern Crown)
Cygnus (Cyg) (swan)
Draco (Dra) (dragon)
Gemini (Gem) (Twins)
Hercules (Her)
Leo (Leo) (lion)
Lepus (Lep) (The Hare)
Libra (Lib) (Scales)
Lyra (Lyr) (Lyre)
Ophiucus (Oph) (serpent holder)
Orion (Ori)
Pegasus (Peg) (winged horse)
Perseus (Per)
Scorpius (Sco) (scorpion)
Sagitarius (Sgr) (archer)
Taurus (Tau) (Bull)
Telescopium (Tel) (telescope)
Ursa Major
Ursa Major (Uma) (big dipper)
Ursa Minor
Ursa Minor (Umi) (little dipper)
Virgo (Vir) (virgin)
Sky Events.
November 2007 and beyond...


This page has been put on a temporary hold,
we are working on an increasing number of exhibitions and presentations.
Our available spare time has limits.

Solar system
Object: Earth Moon. Date and Time standard: PST (Pacific Standard Time). Year: 2007-2008
Month: 1st quarter: full moon: latest quarter: new moon:
October 3 10
October 19 25
November 1 9
November 17 24
December 1 9
December 17 23 30
January 8
January 15 22 29

Future events or events in progress.
Events listed below, are mostly of general or scientific interest.
They are often open to the general public, or simply a description of something in the sky.
Periodic comet 17P/Holmes (en.wikipedia.org) which is moving away from the Sun, had a sudden brightening around October 23 and 24. It seems, its apparent magnitude increased from about 17 to about 2.8 in just a few hours.

This is a great oportunity to observe a comet with only the naked eyes.
It is great looking at it using a binoculars.

comet 17P/Holmes trajectory.

Image by user "tomruen" on wikipedia.

Many people have heard of a bright comet easily visible somewhere in the current sky. However, how to find it ?

To have a quick look at the comet, Please, check the maps passed the history chapter below.
Let's start with a little bit of history.

At time of this writing, they are “only” about 175 stars brighter than the comet “17/P Holmes”. The comet went in a few hours, from a magnitude of about 17 (faint), to a magnitude of about 2.7 (very bright).

It is not the first time it happened in this comet life, in fact it is how it has been found. On November 6, 1892, an amateur astronomer in (or near) London, "Edwin Holmes" found it while observing the Andromeda g Soon, people from the Greenwitch Observatory confirmed the discovery.

This Comet has also been discovered independently a few days later, November 8, by Thomas David Anderson in Edinburgh, One day after (November 9), John Ewen Davidson from Mackay, Queensland, Australia, also found it.

Sir Heinrich Kreutz and George Mary Searle calculated its orbit. It allowed the astronomers of the time, to find out if Astronomers had a doubt, this "new" comet, could be a fragment of an older one. Comet "3D/Biela", previously discovered

In 1846, Comet "3D/Biela", has been observed into two main pieces. In 1852 the two main parts were at about 1.5 million No trace of the comets parts have been seen in 1859, 1865, and 1872.

Hoever, on Nov. 27th, 1872, a huge bright meteor shower, of about 3,000 meteors per hour, has been observed, at the loc The meteors have been seen again at times the comet was supposed to show up, until about the end of the 19th century.

Some people think, comet "3D/Biela" might be responsible of a few fires, that all happened on the same day, around lake It happened on Sunday, October 8, 1871. The cities of Holland, Manistee, and Port Huron, all three in Michigan, Peshtigo in Wisconsin as well as the Big Chicag The NASA, seems to doubt of the credibility of this claim.

Coming back to the comet “17/P Holmes”. Calculation of its trajectory (and its perihelion, which is its orbits around the Sun, closest point to it) confirmed, it was a new comet. Its orbital period semms to be about 6.9 years. Its orbit is between Mars and Jupiter.
It is classified as a Jupiter-family type of Comet.

In 1899 and 1906 the comet has been observed, but the comet seems to have been lost in 1906, to re-appear on July 16, 1 It has been re-observed by Elizabeth Roemer at the US Naval Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, (USA). Scientist Elizabeth Roemer, had been helped by computers algorithm developed by Brian G. Marsden.

From October 23 to 24, 2007, the comet brightness increased to an astonishing level of light (mag 17 to 2.8). The first person known to have observed the activity change was J. A. Henríquez Santana on the island of Tenerife in th Many European observatories lay on this island. A few minutes later Ramón Naves in Barcelona noticed the comet magnitude changes.

On October 25, it became the thrid brightest star in the Perseus constellation. On the 26, it started to looks more like a comet, with a nucleus and a fuzzy ball around, but no tail. the comet is moving away from us. At that time is was almost in opposition with planet Earth. The comet was closest to the Sun on May 4, 2007.

The reason of the sudden brightness is not clear yet. They are more than one possibility. The comet was moving away from Mars on its way to Jupiter, when the sudden brightness event happened. At this point in time speculation vary widely. It could be some gaz or ice burst, while crossing something, or part of the nucleus, that broke a part.

They are many way to find the perseus constellation, from the Ursa Major (big dipper), pegassus and others. Today, I propose to help you finding it using the Orion constellation and Cassiopeia. Both are constellations, people recognize easily.

17P/Holmes (fr.wikipedia.org) (Français).
17P/Holmes (en.wikipedia.org) (English).
APOD (Astronomy Picture Of the Day)2007 October 26 (antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov).
APOD 2007 October 29 (antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov).

Solar System Dynamics, JPL Small-Body Database Browser 17P/Holmes (ssd.jpl.nasa.gov).
Apsis (en.wikipedia.org).
Persée (constellation) (fr.wikipedia.org).
3D/Biela (en.wikipedia.org).

Peshtigo Fire (en.wikipedia.org).
Port Huron Fire of 1871 (en.wikipedia.org).
1871 Great Chicago Fire (en.wikipedia.org).

How to find the constellation "Perseus" and the comet ?
Look for Orion and Cassiopeia.
Draw an imaginary line between them.
The constellation Perseus lay in between, at about 1/3 from Cassiopeia, on the imaginary line.

map, how to find perseus and the comet 17P/Holmes.

Image created using sky chart program "Carte du Ciel" (www.ap-i.net) (Français).
"Sky Chart" (www.ap-i.net) (English).
Modifications, accomplished using the image manipulation program "The Gimp" (www.gimp.org).

I can not find it !
  • Look up in the sky, toward Polaris.

  • Move down, Slightly Nord-East direction.

  • Check with the map below.

  • Je ne la trouve pas !
  • Regardez haut dans le ciel, vers l'étoile polaire.

  • Deplacez le regard, legerment vers le bas, dans une direction Nord-Est.

  • Referez-vous a la carte au dessous.

  • Carte, comment trouver la constellation Perseus ainsi que la comete 17P/Holmes.

    Printable Map with colors adapted to a color printer.

    Carte céleste composees de couleurs facilitant l'impression, sur une imprimante couleur.

    Carte celeste imprimable.

    Interesting learning...
    Stereoscopy, Anaglyph or 3 dimensional imaging, index page Sky Events.
    Remote controlled telescope status of realization.
    When our remote controlled telescope project progress, a status is posted in this area.

    We kept working from a few locations in California. To finally meet in San Mateo (near San Francisco).

    We put all the available parts together right before a show.
    It was the day before the event, we did it on the show floor.
    The show was "Maker Faire" (May19-20 2007).

    The optical tube fit perfectly inside the telescope mount. A little bit of adjusting and some minors wood grinding (with a Dremel micro grinder) were all we needed to fit the parts together.
    Not bad for having worked remotely, without seeing each other parts.

    telescope assy in San Mateo

    We made Some temporary parts, to be able to test the telescope, in motion, on both axis. ().
    telescope assy in San Mateo

    telescope animation loading...
    This image represent a test of motorization on the declination axis.
    It was the first time the telescope has been partially assembled and motorized for a show (Southern California Linux Expo, March 2007).

    This image is an animation.

    Today in history. Some interesting events.
    Historical events, such as past, present and future space missions.
    Date: History events (sorted by year, month, day):

    This page is a work in progress.
    Please, Let me know if you feel it does not display properly on your browser, or if you find out some inaccuracy.
    I am not a native speaker of the English language, Do not hesitate to let me know of any grammar or spelling mistakes.

    The information on this site is believed to be correct, if you find any error, please send a message to the webmaster. We will do our best to fix any error in a timely manner.
    Meanwhile, there is absolutely no waranty of any kind, the information on this site is accurate, neither correct.
    To send us a message.
    Feel free to link to this page and give proper credit to it.
    However it is not allowed to put this page or site into a frame, without first asking for it.

    The latest and original of this document is available at the following address: http://www.linuxastronomy.org/lias/lias/hp/sky_data/hp/index.html Select Ephemerides.

    This page as well as the whole site is Copyright© , 2001 - 2007 Eugene Clement

    Astronomy picture of the day (NGC 1672) Astronomy picture of the day (NGC 1672). NASA (antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov).
    Hubble’s view of barred spiral galaxy NGC 1672ESA
    Hubble Site (hubblesite.org).
    Hubble's View of Barred Spiral Galaxy NGC 1672 Hubble Heritage (heritage.stsci.edu).
    Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy AURA (www.aura-astronomy.org).

    Hubble picture of the day, (crab nebula).
    M1 or NGC 1952 crab nebula (www.spacetelescope.org) (ESA). Hubble space telescope, picture of the day (images and videos), (crab nebula).
    ESA European Space Agency.

    OSEI picture of the day
    Picture from the OSEI (Operational Significant Event Imagery). These images usually represent environment change events.

    Earth motion
    for Coachella Valley.
    seismology for Coachella Valleyseismology for Coachella Valley (Southern California).

    Light pollution prevention start at home.

    The night sky in the World. Satellite monitoring of the artificial night sky brightness and the stellar visibility.
    National Park Service. Outdoor Lighting (www2.nature.nps.gov) What Makes a Light Harmful?.
    IDAInternational Dark-Sky Association.

    Auroral Activity Northern HemisphereAuroral Activity (Northern Hemisphere). NOAA Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite (POES) continually monitor the power flux carried by the protons and electrons that produce aurora in the atmosphere.
    Auroral Activity Southern HemisphereAuroral Activity Southern Hemisphere.

    GOES Solar X-ray Imager, provide full-disk images of the Sun once a minute in the 0.6-6 nm range with 5 arcsec pixels. It allow real-time prediction of solar-terrestrial disturbances.
    more info.

    SOHO Pick of the Week SOHO Pick of the Week. Courtesy of SOHO/EIT and SOHO/LASCO consortium. SOHO is a project of international cooperation between ESA and NASA.
    latest SOHO imageslatest SOHO images171.
    latest SOHO imageslatest SOHO images284.

    CosmicopiaMore about Cosmic Rays (educational).

    Our Sponsor

    People at Alembic have helped us in many ways, at first as sponsors, then as volunteers as well. They are so dedicated, I would not be surprised if their guitars run linux. ;-)

    Alembic guitar

    About the Author

    I am simply a Linux enthusiast with an interest in science.

    I like to build hardware projects and connect them to computers, to do data acquisitions and other things. I also like to make telescopes or make existing telescopes more convenient to use.

    This page will hopefully help me to learn something. I am happy if I can share it with the reader.

    I belong to the following astronomy societies: RAS. ASOD and linuxastronomy.org, which is a virtual group of linux enthusiast, experimenting with astronomy.

    Suggestions or corrections with for goal to make this site better are welcome.