What is Green comet? The celestial object that is set to be visible from Earth for the first time in 50,000 years

What is Green comet? The celestial object that is set to be visible from Earth for the first time in 50,000 years

The comet known as C/2022 E3 hasn't been near earth for 50,000 years. But soon, it is visible to the naked eye.

A comet is a celestial object consisting of a nucleus of ice and dust and when near the sun, a ‘tail’ of gas and dust particles pointing away from the sun.

We all know that it looks like a blaze of white in the night sky. But ever seen a green one?

Well, it's for real. And one that hasn't been seen for 50,000 years....until now.

The comet known as C/2022 E3 hadn't been near earth for 50,000 years. But soon, it will be visible to the naked eye.

It is believed the last creatures which could've seen it are the Neanderthals.

Stargazers hoping to catch a glimpse of the glowing object will likely be able to spot it on Wednesday or Thursday next week.

What is Green comet? The celestial object that is set to be visible from Earth for the first time in 50,000 years
Rare comet that was last seen 50,000 years ago to fly past Earth

The E3 comet will shoot past our planet at a distance of 2.5 light minutes which is 27m miles, according to experts.

E3 is making a long journey from the Oort cloud, an enormous disc of objects that surrounds our solar system.

The comet has a bright green glow around its nucleus which is due to the effect of sunlight on its molecules, especially diatomic carbon and cyanogen. It was discovered by astronomers Frank Masci and Bryce Bolin using the Zwicky Transient Facility on March 2 last year.

The comet reached its perihelion on 12 January 2023, at a distance of 1.11 AU (166 million km; 103 million mi) and the closest approach to Earth will be on 1 February 2023, at a distance of 0.28 AU (42 million km; 26 million mi).

Experts say the green colour of the comet is likely due to the presence of diatomic carbon, chiefly around the comet's head.

Scientists at NASA managed to take pictures of the comet as it moved through space. But astronomers have been tracking it ever since its discovery.

As for visibilty, it can only be seen with binoculars and telescopes.

“This comet isn’t expected to be quite the spectacle that Comet Neowise was back in 2020, but it’s still an awesome opportunity to make a personal connection with an icy visitor from the distant outer Solar System," NASA said in a statement.

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