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A recently discovered green comet is approaching Earth for the first time in 50,000 years. It was last seen in the night sky during the Stone Age.
On March 2, 2022, astronomers using the Wide-Field Survey Camera at the Swicky Transient Facility at Palomar Observatory in San Diego County, California, discovered the comet as it approached the Sun on January 12. NASA.
Named C/2022 E3 (ZTF)The comet has an orbit around the Sun that passes through the outer reaches of the Solar System, which is why it took such a long path — and so long — to swing back by Earth. Planetary association.
The icy object will pass closest to Earth between February 1 and February 2, at a distance of about 26 million miles to 27 million miles (42 million kilometers to 44 million kilometers). Earthsky.
According to Earthsky, even during its closest approach, the comet will be 100 times the distance of the Moon from Earth.
As the comet approaches Earth, observers will be able to see it as a faint green blob near the bright star Polaris, also known as the North Star. Comets reflect different colors of light due to their current states in orbit and chemical composition.
For those in the Northern Hemisphere, early morning skies after the moon has set after midnight are ideal for viewing the comet. A space object will be more difficult to see for those in the Southern Hemisphere.
Depending on its brightness, C/2022 E3 (ZTF) is visible to the unaided eye in a dark sky, but binoculars or binoculars will make the comet easier to see.
Comets can be distinguished from stars by their tails of dust and energetic particles and by the glowing green coma around them.
A coma is an envelope that forms around a comet as it approaches the Sun, causing its ice to rise or directly turn into gas. This makes the comet appear blurry when viewed through binoculars.
After passing the Earth, the comet will form it Close approach of Mars on February 10According to EarthSky.
If clouds or inclement weather get in the way of viewing the sky, The Virtual Telescope Project will share live broadcasts of the comet In the sky above Rome. And don’t miss out Other Celestial Events to Watch for in 2023.