GREAT WALL COMET
Photo Credit: Jiajie Zhang: CLICK photo for larger view and look below for information and links.
What a fantastic photo of Comet C/2013 R1 Lovejoy over the Panlongshan “Coiled Dragon” section of the Great Wall of China. This section is northeast of Beijing but the wall in its entirety stretches from Shanhaiguan in eastern China all the way to Lop Lake in western China. That’s a distance of 5500 miles (8850 km) and that’s also if you don’t count its thousands of miles of undulations, arms and branches that took more than 20 Dynasties to construct. If you put the wall in a straight line it would stretch 13,170 miles (21,195 km)!
As for Comet C/2013 R1 Lovejoy its days of putting on a show are just about over. At an apparent magnitude of 13.7 and fading as it heads back to the outer solar system we will have to find a new area to focus.
This photo made NASA’s Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD) today and I can easily see why.
NASA APOD for this photo: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html
The Sky Live location for Comet C/2013 R1 Lovejoy: http://theskylive.com/lovejoy-tracker