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A spectrum of Comet 46P (Wirtanen) with the ALPY600. The raw spectrum image before sky background subtraction. Note as well as the comet spectrum, the bright Na D line from local light pollution and other auroral lines from natural airglow The coma extended beyond the length of the slit so a separate sky spectrum was recorded and subtracted The Spectrum of the bright central region is dominated by the scattered light from the sun while the spectrum of the extended coma is mainly emission from excited molecules such as CN (The very bright line in the UV), C3, C2 (The Swan bands which give the coma its blue green colour) and NH2 By removing the emission component from the spectrum of the central region and dividing it by the spectrum of a sunlike star recorded the same evening, the reflectance spectrum of the dust can be extracted Robin
The Binocular Sky Newsletter begins it's 8th year! The 7th Anniversary edition is nothing special, but we have: * Comet 46P at naked eye visibility * Mira and Chi Cygni near maximum * Uranus still available in the evening * Pleiades and Orion Nebula are evening objects The nights are longest this month, so you'll have plenty of opportunity to see -- and share -- what the sky has to enthrall us with. (Or, for the pedants among us, "...what the sky has with which to enthrall us." ? ) To pick up your free copy, just head over to http://binocularsky.com and click on the Newsletter tab. You can also subscribe (also free) and have it emailed each month.