It's been a tense evening following the fate of Comet ISON as it rounded the sun today. Thanks to up to the minute information and photos on Twitter the full drama has been easy to follow.
As early as Tuesday concerns were being raised as ISON dimmed suddenly. Then the comet started brightening again. As it approach the sun this evening however it seemed to break up, smearing along the line of its orbital path. There seemed little chance of it making it past the sun.
Then some hope . . . Something was clearly seen in images from the solar telescopes, perhaps the comet has survived? After a bit more analysis and more images most experts are agreed that the comet is effectively dead
If, like me, you didn't manage to see the comet earlier this month then it looks like you'll have to write this one off. But there is still a comet visible in the night sky. It's time to track down Comet Lovejoy.
A big thanks should go to Stuart who has spent the last year keeping us all informed and inspired in the build up to ISON. His blog Waiting for ISON is still a great resource for observing and photographing comets, and of course has details on Comet Lovejoy. Thanks Stu.