Orion, Meteor and Comet


December 13, 2004

This photo of the constellation of Orion the Hunter also captured two temporary visitors to this part of the sky. Below Orion is the faint streak left by a fleeting Geminid meteor. Farther to the lower right can be seen a small green fuzzy patch -- this is Comet Machholz, which took most of December 2004 to pass close by Orion. Below are detail views of the meteor and comet at the full resolution of my scanner. I was gratified to see that even with a 7-minute exposure the stars show practically no trailing -- my homemade tracking mount was working well that night.

Full-resolution view of Geminid meteor

Full-resolution view of Comet Machholz

Date: December 13, 2004.
Time: 10:49 p.m. MST.
Location: near Florence Junction, Arizona.
Camera: Olympus OM-1 35mm SLR on homemade tracking mount.
Film: Kodak Elite Chrome 400 slide.
Focal length: 40 mm.
Aperture: f/2.8.
Exposure time: 7 minutes.
Scanner: Nikon Coolscan LS-2000.

Revised: March 7, 2005
Copyright © 2005 Joe Orman
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