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Facing SW just before sunrise on April 27, 2021 in Central Florida:

The timestamps on the pics start at 6:23 end at 6:27. It was still visible and breaking up like a post launch trail that I would see in the east. By the size, from beginning to end, looks like the direction was from/could be described as, from New Orleans toward Ft. Myers crossing between the moon and Gulf of Mexico. Because its small early Northwest of moon and larger late south of moon.

Facing SW just before sunrise on April 27, 2021 in Central Florida

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    $\begingroup$ Looks a lot like a cloud edge lit by the moon to me. Definitely not a comet (everybody would have been seeing and raving about it worldwide). $\endgroup$ May 4 at 7:47
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    $\begingroup$ In my opinion is a cloud. This is what I would say if only the bottom pic were shown to me. $\endgroup$
    – Alchimista
    May 4 at 11:06
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    $\begingroup$ This is an awesome picture! $\endgroup$ May 4 at 22:42
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Having seen the extra photos, this is certainly a cloud.

It is a high altitude cloud: a fragment of cirrus composed of ice crystals. These are aligned roughly horizontally, and they are catching the light of the moon. This is why the region of the cloud is more highly lit than the parts to the side: a sun-pillar (or moon-pillar?) effect.

Its movement over the course of a few minutes also indicates a nearby object. It is not a body in space, as astronomical bodies are so distant that they appear to move only very slowly. One very simple rule is "if it moves or changes, then it isn't astronomy, it's meteorology or technology" This isn't quite true, but very few astronomical bodies can be seen to change position over the course of a few minutes.

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  • $\begingroup$ If this is a high-altitude cloud, wouldn't it appear to move east to west? This moved north to south, or appears to have done so. It started on the right side of the frame which is north move to the left which is south. Is that normal for a cloud being viewed from Central Florida? $\endgroup$
    – JMCF
    May 4 at 21:06
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    $\begingroup$ Yes, moving from North to South is normal. It would move as the wind blew it. A high altitude wind from North to South is perfectly possible (and could well be in a different direction from the wind at low altitude.) One very simple rule is "if it moves or changes, then it isn't astronomy. It's metrology or technology" This isn't quite true, but very few astronomical bodies can be seen to change position over the course of a few minutes. $\endgroup$
    – James K
    May 4 at 21:16
  • $\begingroup$ Im still looking out for sexier feedback; but its still pretty neat. huh? $\endgroup$
    – JMCF
    May 4 at 21:39
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    $\begingroup$ @JMCF Nature doesn't care about what you think is sexy. It's a cloud. The end. Furthermore 1.) Comets have way too low surface brightnesses to appear on the same photograph as the moon without the moon oversaturating the entire picture. 2.) Orbital mechanics doesn't allow comets to pass by this fast. 3.) Also check windy.com for the prevalent high-altitude winds. North-south is no problem, but the real 3-D direction might also be skewed by your perspective. How much did it shrink during the perceived movement? $\endgroup$ May 4 at 23:43
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    $\begingroup$ s/metrology/meteorology/ $\endgroup$
    – Ruslan
    May 15 at 19:27
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It is not a comet. If that were a comet, it would be a very bright one and would be visible by the naked eye. Since no comets that bright are currently in the vicinity of the Earth, it can't be a comet. (see upcoming comets of interest)

If this second source of light was not visible in the sky but only appeared in the picture, then the most likely explanation is a lens flare: the light coming from the Moon got scattered by the optics in your camera, and the scattered light was picked up by the sensor of your camera.

It could be the reflection of the Moon on the clouds. Based on your comment, this is the most likely explanation.

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    $\begingroup$ I have a series of pics over about 10 minutes showing it move N to S. Lens flare doesn't behave like that. $\endgroup$
    – JMCF
    May 4 at 10:15
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    $\begingroup$ That’s consistent with it being a cloud. $\endgroup$ May 4 at 13:41

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