Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks

I went out last night (15th) to quickly image comet C/2023 H2 Lemmon. After I got a shot I thought I would try comet 12P/Pons-Brooks. I have never seen a comet show up like this. Lemmon looks typically like several other comets I have shot, but 12P looks like a boated star. I thought I was just in the wrong place at first but no. From my locale the field is located in the west in a very light polluted sky as I am looking towards Midwest City and Tinker AFB. Spaceweather. com has told of outbursts with this comet and I thought I might be able to view the “horns” but instead I got this. First is Lemmon then Pons-Brook. The two field stars down to the left are about 7.5 mag. Both comets were shot at the same magnification.


Very interesting. I also really like to image comets. What equipment were you using? Both comets are pretty faint. Not sure if I would be able image them with my setup.

I was using an Orion XX12g Truss Tube GoTo Dobsonian with a TeleVue 27mm Panoptic EP and an iPhone 13 Pro Max with NightCap app.

Here is some of the space weather article.


Those are some really significant outbursts!

Thanks for the information. I thought that might have been through an iPhone. I have tried that but with not much luck. Yours were very nice.
I went out last night and tried to image Comet Pons. I have a lot of trees so finding a good spot can sometimes be a challenge. I setup in what I thought was a good spot but the trees got me about half through my session. I went ahead and stacked them today. It is not very good but at least I was able to observe and image it. Need more frames and less moon light. But at least I got another comet under the belt.
My equipment used:
Canon 70D camera – Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens
SkyWatcher GTi Mount – Apertura carbon Fiber Tripod – Apertura 155-Watt Power Supply
ASIAir Plus
Astro Pixel Processor - 33 lights - 20 flats - 10 - Darks - 10 Bias


Very nice! :grin:

Hard work finding a good spot, but you managed. I’m enjoying the view, thanks!

Got this image of 12P/Pons-Brooks this evening in College Station, TX.

15 minutes of 4 sec subs, autostacked on my Unistellar eVscope 2. Also captured a 20 min citizen science mission that was uploaded to SETI.


I found it the last two nights too, it’s up pretty high in the Western sky. I just put a reducer on my OTA, so I didn’t feel like trying to image it. I looked just like Mitche’s photo with that fuzz ball around it.

Here is another try at 12p/Pons-Brooks. Setup last night in my front yard. (Feb 5, 2024) It is fairly low and in the constellation Cygnus. I was hoping to get about an hour of images before it was too low. I was only able to 40-60 second exposures. I was able to see the green color in the subs. It has brighten quite a bit from my previous attempt in November. I have imaged it several times since November but this is the one I decided to post.

My equipment used:
ZWO ASI2600MC pro camera cooled to -15 C
Skywatcher Esprit 80 ED Super APO f/5 on EQ6-R mount
Processed with Astro Pixel Processor - 40 light – 20 flats - 30 bias


Heck yeah! Well done :+1::+1:

Really nice! I think I can see two separate tails, very faintly.

The comet was pretty low in the sky?

Just had to give 12P/Pons-Brooks another try. Went out last night March 10, 2024 around 8:30 PM DST in my front yard. It is pretty low in Andromeda. I knew I only had about an hour to image before it set. I had setup earlier in the day to save time. I started getting parts of the neighbor roof after about ½ hour, then it moved into clear again and I got a few more images before moving into another roof line.
All total I stacked 30 bias, 30 darks, 20 flats and 50 images of 45 second exposures 1600 iso 400mm f/5.6 with Astro Pixel Processor and finished the processing with Photoshop.

Equipment used:
Canon 70D camera – Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens
SkyWatcher Star Adventurer GTi Mount – Apertura carbon Fiber Tripod – Apertura 155-Watt Power Supply – ASIAir Plus

It has changed considerably from my Feb 5, 2024 attempt. It now shows a long tail. Was really tickled by how much it has changed.
With my 15x170 binoculars I could see the green color and a nice round coma, thought I could make out a faint tail.



Really nice, especially when you had to dodge multiple roof lines. :+1: :+1:

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Looks great, well done Stan!

Andy and Russ,
Thanks for the positive responses. I would have liked to have been able to attend the Messier Marathon at CRO. If I had attended, I definitely would have imaged 12P/Pons-Brooks there, to take advantage of the open horizon. I am sure I would have been able to take a better image. I live in an area that is hilly and tree covered so these near horizon comets are a struggle for me. My polar alignment was off as I was in a rush to get started imaging. It was fun to see how much it has changed in my several attempts to image it.

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks 3/9/24
7:39pm - 9:12pm

Star Field:
15, 30-Second, Red
15, 30-Second, Green
15, 30-Second, Blue

Comet Core:
15, 1-minute, Lum
15, 1-minute, Red
15, 1-minute, Green
15, 1-minute, Blue

ASI2600mm Pro
Sky-Watcher Esprit ED
.79 reducer
446 focal length
EQ6r-Pro Mount
ASI Air Pro

Pixinsight and Photoshop

Location: Cheddar Ranch Observatory (CRO)
Publicly accessible dark sky site owned and operated by the Oklahoma City Astronomy Club.



Very good Andy, I wish I had your talent and skills.



Thanks Stan!

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! :+1: