It might be the last opportunity for humanity to observe a rare green comet as it passes Earth. A ball of frozen gas and dust is already speeding by, and stunning pictures are already exposing what you might see if you glance at the early morning skies and spot it.
The Zwicky Transient Facility, which made the comet’s initial discovery in March, gave it the official name C/2022 E3 (ZTF). However, skywatchers shorten it to Comet ZTF.
Until the first few days of February, this chilly cosmic visitor will leave a green trail across the sky. Under dark skies distant from city lights, you may need binoculars or even a telescope to see it.
With a telescope, you might be able to observe Comet ZTF as follows:
Nature Of A Comet
Many comets exhibit this green glow. This aura has been connected in laboratory studies to the dicarbon reactive molecule, which releases green light when exposed to sunlight.
Aspects Of Bright Comets
“Bright comets are rare and gorgeous, like this one, so we like watching and taking pictures of them.” An amateur astronomer and night-sky photographer from Arizona named Chris Schur told Insider in an email that no two comet tails are ever the same.
From night to night, comets “move among the stars, making it difficult to just find them sometimes.”During a live feed of his telescope views, astronomer Gianluca Masi recorded the video of Comet ZTF below, which features its shifting background of stars:
Where can we find green comets ?
It’s amazing to observe such an “icy environment,” Masi said in an email to Insider.
Comet C/2022 E3 ZTF serves as a gentle reminder that those celestial objects are among the most beautiful in the universe and that we should not pass up the chance to take a look at them.
You want to see the green comet, right? Go somewhere with dark skies, away from city lights, and before dawn, look toward the North Star, Polaris.
If you can, use a telescope; if not, bring binoculars. The comet is most likely not going to be visible to the unaided eye unless you have an extremely black sky.
The constellations Boötes and Hercules are being passed by the comet, according to EarthSky.org. The green space snowball will start to appear earlier in the evening on January 30 and closer to Polaris.