C/2009 P1 (Garradd)

Comet Visits a Globular Cluster

C/2009 P1 (Garradd)
C/2009 P1 (Garradd)


The other night a visitor to the inner solar system, Comet C/2009 P1 (Garradd), appeared to make its own visit to M15, one of the brightest globular clusters in the northern sky. I say “appeared to” because M15 is actually over 33 thousand light years distant.

Comet Garradd was beautiful to see as it glided past the glob over the two nights I was able to view it. The soft glow of the moderately condensed comet head contrasted nicely with the bright knot of stars in M15 as the fan shaped tail swept faintly to the southeast, a sight I’ve tried to reproduce with this sketch.

Garradd will be making more visits over the next few weeks as it travels past the constellations Delphinus and Sagitta and the Coathanger asterism. Catch it if you are able!

C/2009 P1 (Garradd)
Twin Sugars Observatory Friars Hill, WV USA
August 1st & 2nd, 2011
Graphite pencils on white sketch paper, inverted digitally

Regards to all,

Michael Rosolina

4 thoughts on “Comet Visits a Globular Cluster”

  1. Michael,

    Remarkable work and great opportunity to ‘bag’ this visitor for us to appreciate and for you to add to your collection of sketches. Good clarification concerning the apparent illusion that the comet is grazing M15, when in fact, it is not.

    Dark and clear skies,


  2. Michael,

    I was so looking forward to seeing thia alignment but I was clouded out. I’ll just enjoy the view through your sketch thank you.

    Frank 🙂

  3. Thanks, everyone. I got lucky with the weather on this one. Hope you all get a chance to see the comet in the next few weeks.


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