Bright tailed Christmas comet Lovejoy captured in Chile
Washington, Jan 4 (ANI): Comet Lovejoy, which many people thought would be destroyed during a close encounter with the Sun, has been captured at ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile.
The recently discovered Comet Lovejoy has been captured in stunning photos and time-lapse video taken from ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile. The comet graced the southern sky after it had unexpectedly survived a close encounter with the Sun.
A new time-lapse video sequence of the comet, which features a bright tail millions of kilometres long, was taken by Gabriel Brammer from ESO less than two days ago on 22 December 2011. Gabriel was finishing his shift as support astronomer at the Paranal Observatory when Comet Lovejoy rose over the horizon just before dawn.
"On the last morning of my shift I tried to try catch it on camera before sunrise," said Brammer.
"The tail of the comet was easily visible with the naked eye, and the combination of the crescent Moon, comet, Milky Way and the laser guide star was nearly as impressive to the naked eye as it appears in the long-exposure photos."
The sequence also features the pencil-thin beam of the VLT's Laser Guide Star set against the beautiful backdrop of the Milky Way, as astronomers conduct their last observations for the night.
ESO optician Guillaume Blanchard made a marvellous wide-angle photo of Comet Lovejoy and ESO Photo Ambassador Yuri Beletsky, captured the spectacle from Santiago de Chile.
"For me this comet is a Christmas present to the people who will stay at Paranal over Christmas," Blanchard said. (ANI)
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