Ancient comet returns to earth's skies; Lucknow preps for the celestial spectacle

Ancient comet returns to earth's skies; Lucknow preps for the celestial spectacle

The green-coloured comet, C/2022 E3 (ZTF), which was last seen about 50,000 years ago, will be visible from Jan end to early Feb.

People have always been fascinated by distant celestial objects such as glinting stars in velvet black skies, colossal cousins sharing the solar system with our planet, outlying galaxies and nebulas and even beguiling streaks of light making rare appearances over earth skies.

Recently, experts at various international and domestic astronomical institutes have discovered a rare comet which could be visible over Earth's skies as it shoots past the planet and the Sun in the coming weeks. The Indira Gandhi Planetarium in Lucknow has organized viewing opportunities for the enthusiasts for the sighting of the comet.

The comet could even be visible to the naked eye

The green-coloured celestial speedster named C/2022 E3 (ZTF) is about to make a comeback near Earth's orbit, after travelling from the icy reaches of our Solar System. The comet which was last seen about 50,000 years ago during the Upper Paleolithic period, will be visible from January end to early February, both before and after its perihelion.

Furthermore, the comet could even be visible to an unaided eye between the duration provided that the weather and air pollution do not hamper the view. For this, the officials at the Indira Gandhi Planetarium of Lucknow have arranged for proper viewing equipment including binoculars and telescopes for sighting the rare celestial spectacle.

A super-rare spectacle

Comets are cosmic objects mainly made of frozen gases, rock, and dust that orbit the Sun. These celestial objects, originating mostly from the Oort cloud, surrounding our Solar System, heat up and start spewing dust and gases into a giant glowing head when they get closer to the Sun.

The upcoming C/2022 E3 comet has a diameter of about 1 km and will be visible for the last time over Earth's skies as it will probably be ejected out of its orbit after this revolution.

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