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The Brightest Comet for Many Years

Media Release
January 15

Comet 2006 P1 (McNaught) – the Brightest Comet for Many Years.

Astronomers from New Zealand and around the world are reporting that Comet McNaught is now visible in broad daylight. Currently the comet is very close to the Sun, so it is tricky to find. It is now moving away from the Sun and will be easy to spot in the evening twilight.

Brian Carter, Senior Astronomer at Carter Observatory says, “Look towards the South Western sky low down towards the horizon soon after Sunset. You will have no trouble in finding it over the next few days”.

Comet McNaught had its closest approach to the Sun over the weekend causing the comet to vaporize furiously and brighten. McNaught is now the brightest comet in more than 40 years (currently brighter than the planet Venus), and it may become the brightest in centuries.

The comet will slowly fade over the days. Although you will have no difficulty in finding it over the next few days, we have produced finding charts for when it gets fainter,


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