Latest image

Comet C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS)
False color image of comet C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS), obtained on 2018 Jan. 21 (20h46-20h56UT) with 60-cm, f/3.3 Deltagraph. Exposure time was 5x120s in B filter.
Copyright © 2018 by H. Mikuz, Črni Vrh Observatory.

Welcome to COBS!

Comet Observation database (COBS) saw first light in 2010 and is maintained by Crni Vrh Observatory. It is a free and unique service for comet observers worldwide which allows submission, display and analysis of comet data in a single location.

Amateur astronomers can make valuable contributions to comet science by observing comets and submitting their observations to COBS as professional astronomers typically do not have telescope time required to acquire regular observations. We therefore encourage comet observers worldwide to submit their observations and contribute to the COBS database.

Registered observers may submit observations using a web based form which which stores the observations in an SQL database and stores them in ICQ format. Observations may be queried and plotted in the web site or exported for further processing, analysis and publication. The database currently contains more than 233000 comet observations of more than 1200 different comets and represents the largest available database of comet observations.

The data stored in COBS is freely available to everyone who honors our data usage policy. Please cite COBS as the reference if you use it for comet studies.

Latest lightcurve

Light-curve of C/2016 M1 (PANSTARRS) (Apr 21, 2018).

Type  Comet name  Obs date       Mag     Dia   DC  Tail     Observer
  V    37         2018 04 20.71  12.7     1.1  4            WYA  
  V    66         2018 04 20.70  11.3     5    2/           WYA  
  V      2016M1   2018 04 20.69  10.5     3.8  5/           WYA  
  V      2015O1   2018 04 19.92  12.8     1.6  2/           HAR11
  V      2016N6   2018 04 19.91  12.7     0.8  4/           HAR11
  V      2016R2   2018 04 19.84  11.8     1.3  2            BOH02
  V      2016M1   2018 04 19.11  10.8     1.7  2            COLac
  V      2016M1   2018 04 19.09   9.9     4    3            GON05
  V      2016R2   2018 04 18.94  11.5     1.5  3            GON05
  V      2015O1   2018 04 18.93  12.9     1.5  3            WAR01
  V      2016N6   2018 04 18.91  12.5     1.5  5            WAR01
  V      2015O1   2018 04 18.91  12.3     1    4            GON05
  V      2016N6   2018 04 18.90  12.7     0.8  4/   2.5m 55 HAR11
  V      2015O1   2018 04 18.89  13.4     2    3            HAR11
  V      2016N6   2018 04 18.89  12.1     1    5            GON05

Comet Observing Planner

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Current comet magnitudes and observable region

Comet                       Mag   Trend   Observable        When visible
                                                         45N            45S
C/2016 M1 (PANSTARRS)       10.5  bright  83N to 90S  Early evening  Best morning  
C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS)       11.5  steady  90N to 48S  Best evening   Early evening 
C/2016 N6 (PANSTARRS)       12.5  steady  90N to 26S  All night      Never up      
29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann    13.0  steady  87N to 90S  Early evening  Early evening 
P/2010 H2 (Vales)           13.0  steady  72N to 90S  Best morning   Best morning  
C/2015 O1 (PANSTARRS)       13.0  steady  90N to 34S  All night      Never up      
66P/du Toit                 13.0  bright  50N to 90S  Early evening  Best morning  
240P/NEAT                   14.0  steady  90N to 77S  Poor elongation Poor elongation
37P/Forbes                  14.0  bright  68N to 90S  Early evening  Best morning  

The observable region is an approximate indication of the latitude at which the comet may be seen. The period when visible is calculated for latitude 45°N and 45°S.

Latest news

Mar. 28, 2018

What interstellar visitor 'Oumuamua can teach us

The first interstellar object ever seen in our solar system, named 'Oumuamua, is giving scientists a fresh perspective on the development of planetary systems. A new study by a team including astrophysicists at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, calculated how this visitor from outside our solar system fits into what we know about how planets, asteroids and comets form.


Mar. 21, 2018

A star disturbed the comets of the solar system 70,000 years ago

About 70,000 years ago, a small reddish star approached our solar system and gravitationally disturbed comets and asteroids. Astronomers from the Complutense University of Madrid and the University of Cambridge have verified that the movement of some of these objects is still marked by that stellar encounter.


Mar. 20, 2018

New Comet: C/2018 E1 (ATLAS)

CBET nr. 4494, issued on 2018, March 16, announces the discovery of an apparently asteroidal object (magnitude ~17) in the course of the "Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System" (ATLAS) search program on CCD images obtained with a 0.5-m f/2 Schmidt reflector at Haleakala, Hawaii. Posted on the Minor Planet Center's PCCP webpage, it has been reported as showing cometary activity by CCD astrometrists elsewhere. The new comet has been designated C/2018 E1 (ATLAS).


Mar. 20, 2018

Interstellar asteroid, 'Oumuamua, likely came from a binary star system

New research finds that 'Oumuamua, the rocky object identified as the first confirmed interstellar asteroid, very likely came from a binary star system.


Mar. 19, 2018

Comet 'Chury's' late birth

Comets which consist of two parts, like Chury, can form after a catastrophic collision of larger bodies. Such collisions may have taken place in a later phase of our solar system, which suggests that Chury can be much younger than previously assumed. This is shown through computer simulations by an international research group with the participation of the University of Bern.