Comet Lulin to Make Rare Appearance

Friday, February 20, 2009

A comet is soaring through the sky and residents will be able to see it tonight at the West Georgia Observatory on the UWG campus.

A comet is soaring through the sky and residents will be able to see it tonight at the West Georgia Observatory on the UWG campus.The West Georgia Observatory will open for public viewing of Comet Lulin on Monday, February 23, from 9:30 to 10:30 p.m.

The comet will be 38 million miles from Earth, the closest it will ever get, and should also be visible through binoculars and in dark unlit areas by the naked eye. 

Quanzhi Ye, a 19-year-old meteorology student in Mainland China, discovered Comet Lulin on images taken with a 16-inch telescope at Lulin Observatory at National Central University in Taiwan in 2007.

Public observations are held monthly and for special viewings if the sky is clear. Groups or organizations may request special observations conducted by professor and chair of the Department of Physics, Dr. Bob Powell.

In addition to the public viewing on Monday, the observatory will be open each month through May. A complete schedule can be seen at http://www.westga.edu/~physics/observatory.html.

The WG Observatory is located on Plant Op Drive off West Georgia Drive. For more information, call 678-839-4095 or send a note to bpowell@westga.edu.