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~ May 25, 2011 ~
Just stumbled across your channel in my search to find out the truth about comet Elenin. There is so much conflicting information at present. I have a question for you. We should be able to see Elenin now in the constellation of Leo, why is it not visible? Is it because it is actually a brown dwarf star? Look forward to hearing from you.
Thanks so much for watching and writing in! That is an excellent question. Comet Elenin promises to bring us a grand view later this year when it has its closest approach to earth. It appears that the most recent observation [as of 5/25/2011] shows the comet at magnitude 16.4. This is very dim for backyard telescopes, especially small ones. Projections have it at around magnitude 6 later this year as it makes its closest approach to earth after it makes its way to around the sun. This should make it a wonderful sight to see. Of course as with any comet it is unclear as to how actually bright it will be. Because of the gaseous nature of a comet it can be hard to predict how much material will boil off into a coma and tail and this can affect its brightness. So don't fret! You haven't missed it! The best is yet to come!
PS: Comet Elenin is not a brown dwarf . A typical brown dwarf "star" would be much larger than Jupiter and would have been brilliantly visible by now, and depending on its size, even so from the distance of Pluto!
Comet Elenin: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C/2010_X1
Brown Dwarf: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brown_dwarf