A comet that has not been to Earth or the inner solar system since the last ice age will make its closest approach to the sun tonight (January 12) and you can watch it live online in a free webcast.
Designated culprit C/2022 E3 (ZTF), it will come within 100 million miles (160 million km) from the sun when it reaches its closest point, called perihelion. Then the comet moves towards a land It will approach our planet’s closest point, perihelion, on February 2, when it will pass us at a distance of 26 million miles (42 million kilometers).
Although it will not be visible to the naked eye during its close approach the sun, the comet should be visible with binoculars. If C/2022 E3 (ZTF) continues to grow as bright as it currently is, it may eventually be possible to see it in the night sky with the naked eye. Whether or not you’ll be able to see it yourself, the Virtual Telescope Project You will be hosting a free live broadcast of the comet (Opens in a new tab) starting from 11 p.m. EST in January. 12 (0400 GMT on January 13). You can watch the live broadcast online from the website The project Location (Opens in a new tab) or on it YouTube channel (Opens in a new tab). It will appear on this page at start time as well.
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (NASA JPL) He gives the period of this comet as 50,000 years. This means that the last time C/2022 E3’s (ZTF) orbit brought it so close to Earth, our planet was in the middle of the last ice age or “Ice Age” and early Homo sapiens and Neanderthals still shared the planet.
to me in the sky (Opens in a new tab) From New York City C/2022 E3 (ZTF) at perihelion will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 11:18 p.m. EDT (0418 GMT) and reaching 64 degrees above the eastern horizon. The comet will disappear from view as dawn breaks around 6:07 AM EDT (1107 GMT).
C/2022 E3 (ZTF) will finally reach its brightest on February 2 when it is at its closest point to Earth, visible at constellation Camelopardalis.
The comet was first identified in March 2022 by the Survey’s Wide Field Camera Zwicky Transit Facility It was thought at first that asteroid. This was the rapid brightness of C/2022 E3 (ZTF) as it moved from the inner orbit of Jupiter which indicated her true guilty nature.
The comets’ brightness can be hard to predict, but even if C/2022 E3 (ZTF) doesn’t brighten enough to be visible with the naked eye, it will still be observable during January and early February with binoculars and small telescopes.
According to NASA (Opens in a new tab) Northern Hemisphere observers should be able to find C/2022 E3 (ZTF) in the morning sky, as it moves to the northwest throughout January. The comet will become visible to skywatchers in the Southern Hemisphere in early February 2023.
the new moon phase (when the moon is not fully illuminated) on January 21 should provide the perfect dark sky needed to detect C/2022 E3 (ZTF), weather permitting.
If you want to look at the C/2022 E3 ZTF and don’t have the right equipment, be sure to check out our guides to find out. best binoculars and the The best telescopes To watch a comet or any other object in the sky. To take the best comet photos you can get, we have recommendations for the best Astrophotography cameras And The best lenses for astrophotography.
Editor’s note: If you captured Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF), and would like to share it with Space.com readers, send your photo(s), comments, name, and location to email@example.com.