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Comet Encke (2P/Encke)

Comet Encke (2P/Encke) is a periodic comet which graced the skies in November, 2013.

Illustration image

Encke's comet is a short-period comet.

NASA/ESA/Max-Planck-Institute for Solar System Research

A periodic comet, with the shortest orbital period - it takes 3.3 years to complete a single orbit around the Sun - Encke's comet was discovered in 1786 by French astronomer, Pierre Méchain. However, unlike its counterparts, Encke was named not after its discoverer, but after Johann Franz Encke, a German astronomer who calculated its orbit.

Encke's comet did not get bright enough to be seen by the naked eye. However, observers with binoculars were able to see the comet clearly.

Encke is a Northern Hemisphere comet. People in the Southern Hemisphere were not able to view it.

The best time to view Encke is during pre dawn hours in the month of November.

Topics: Comets