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Comet Hale-Bopp Update



Sky & Telescope News Bulletin
April 11, 1997

Comet Hale-Bopp (C/1995 O1) will try to hold its own this week against strong competition from the waxing Moon. Reports indicate that the comet is still near magnitude -0.5 with a lovely dust tail that was nearly 20 degrees long when viewed from a dark site. Even in strong moonlight, the comet will be unmistakable. Look at least 1-1/4 hours after sunset when the sky is completely dark. Comet Hale-Bopp should be obvious 20 to 30 degrees above the northwestern horizon (depending on your latitude).


Comet Hale-Bopp is still in good view this week, despite increasing moonlight and despite the fact that it is now moving away from both the Earth and Sun. Look low in the west-northwest right after the end of twilight. Has it faded visibly from a week or two ago? Has it changed shape?

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