ISON fades.

Lovejoy, scientifically named C/2013 R1, has been visible since early November. Samir Dhurde, scientific officer at the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA), said, "The comet is currently visible in the northern hemisphere in India including Pune and Mumbai. It has brightened since November and can be easily seen with binoculars. If you are at a dark place, the comet may be visible to the naked eye as a green fuzzy globule."
The tail is slowly growing, but right now we may only see its hazy head called the Coma. It is likely to be best visible on December 22, Dhurde added.
The comet was discovered two months ago and it passed the Earth on November 19.
Dhurde said, "It is a good opportunity for astrophotography hobbyists to photograph this comet with techniques which are easily learnt. To see Lovejoy, one might have to wake up early. It currently appears at a fair height from the eastern horizon."
The presently visible comet C/2013 R1 or Lovejoy was discovered by Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy in September this year. Terry Lovejoy had discovered another comet before, named C/2011 W3 (also called Lovejoy), which was visible to the naked-eye. Lovejoy was confirmed the same day by astronomers at the Remanzacco Observatory, Italy. The latest comet was found as a result of a regular survey Terry conducts to search for new comets. This emphasizes the fact that amateur astronomers are equally capable of discovering comets. Of course, with a lot of dedication and patience.
The best view
Comet Lovejoy will be best visible when it reaches perihelion (closest approach to Sun) on December 22. On that day it will be at a distance of 121 million km from the Sun. The tail is slowly growing as we get closer to this date, but right we may only see its hazy head called the Coma.
Where to spot it
- One needs to wake up early and look in the eastern horizon between 5.30 am and 6 am
- It will pass into Hercules in a week and then move closer to the Sun to be visible till a week after perihelion
- The comet would be lost in the sunshine by about 45 minutes before the sunrise