Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF), discovered in March of last year, can already be seen by amateur astronomers in the sky, possibly even a naked eye. This February 1st It is, according to experts, the best day to observe it.

It was discovered by astronomers using the Zwicky Transient Facility’s Wide Field Survey Camera. Since then, the new long-period comet — it completes its orbit around the Sun in about 50,000 years — has seen its brightness considerably and is now sweeping across the northern constellation Corona Borealis in the predawn skies, NASA reports.

This telescopic image from December 19 (top) shows the bright greenish coma of the comet, a short, broad dust tail, and a long, faint ion tail that extends across a 2.5-degree field of view.

On its journey through the interior of the Solar System, comet 2022 E3 reached perihelion, its closest point to the Sun, on January 12 and will be at perigee, its closest point to our planet, on February 1. Comet brightness is notoriously unpredictable, but by then C/2022 E3 (ZTF) could be visible to the naked eye in dark night skies, the space agency reports.

How to see it?

Who are in the northern hemisphere will have a better chance of seeing it. You will have to look to the northwest, especially before the Sun rises. It will be visible without binoculars or a telescope, although in this way it is possible that you will only see a spot in the sky, so it is very unlikely that you will appreciate its characteristic tail of green color.

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These are some recommendations for observation:

  • The best time is just before dawn

  • It is essential that there are no clouds

  • You have to look northwest.

If binoculars and telescopes are not available, the Virtual Telescope Project(The Virtual Telescope Project) offers information and images on your Web pagewhile amateur astronomers will be able to find the exact position in this astronomical map.