Sunday, 29 June 2014

Comet C/2014 E2 (Jacques) reaches perihelion.

Comet C/2014 E2 (Jacques) will reach its perihelion (the closest point on its orbit to the Sun)  on Thursday 3 July 2014, reaching its brightest in the sky (seen from Earth) a later in July, when it should be possible to see the comet with binoculars in the constellations of Taurus and Auriga. C/2014 E2 (Jacques) will make a close pass of the planet Venus on 13 July, and be at its closest to Earth on 28 August, though it will still be more than 0.5 AU away (equivalent to half the distance between the Earth and the Sun).

C/2014 E2 (Jacques) imaged on 17 April 2014 by Michael Jäger from Stixendorf in Austria. Spaceweather.

C/2014 E2 (Jacques) was discovered on 13 March 2014 by Cristóvão Jacques Lage de Faria, Eduardo Pimentel and João Ribeiro de Barros working at the Southern Observatory for Near Earth Asteroids Research in Minas Gerais State, Brazil. The name C/2014 E2 (Jacques) implies that it is a non-periodic comet (C/) (all comets are, strictly speaking, periodic since they all orbit the Sun, but those with periods longer than 200 years are considered to be non-periodic), that it was the second comet (comet 2) discovered in the first half of March 2014 (period 2014 E), and that it was discovered by Jacques.

Star chart showing the position of C/2014 E2 (Jacques) in the sky as seen from Earth from May 2014 to February 2015. In the sky.

C/2014 E2 (Jacques) is calculated to have a 21 424 year orbital period and a highly eccentric orbit that takes it from 0.66 AU from the Sun at perihelion (66% of the distance between the Earth and the Sun, slightly inside the orbit of Venus) to 1542 AU from the Sun at aphelion, which is 1542 times as far from the Sun as the Earth, over 500 times as far from the Sun as Neptune, 300 times as far from the Sun as the outer limit of the Kuiper Belt, but still within the inner Oort Cloud.

The passage of C/2014 E2 (Jacques) through the Inner Solar System. JPL Small Body Database Browser.

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