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Saturday, February 17, 2007

 

New Unaided eye Nova in Scorpius!!!

Map of the eastern horizon in the Southern hemisphere at around 2:20 am (daylight saving time). The circle shows the field of view of a pair of 10x50 binoculars, the red cross shows the approximate location of the Nova. Click image for a larger Map.

Nova location:R.A. = 16h 57m 41.26s,
Decl. = -32o 20' 35.6" (epoch 2000.0)

A nova bright enough to be seen with the unaided eye has been found in Scorpio. To quote the AAVSO alert

This nova, discovered at 9th magnitude 12 days ago, has brightened dramatically in the past few days to 3rd magnitude, becoming one of the brightest novae in the past several years. It has gained the attention of the professional community and will be observed by numerous satellites, including Chandra, Swift, and INTEGRAL.
It is currently magnitude 3.7, about as brigh as epsilon Crucis, the fifth star in the Southern Cross, and a bit dimmer than epsilon Scorpii, the star it is underneath. It should be easily visible to the unaided eye from all Australian locations, the unfortunate thing is that you have to get up at at between 2:oo am to 4:30 am to see it.

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