Neanderthal comet: it is visible to the naked eye! Let’s see where to look for it in the sky (Video)

Neanderthal comet: it is visible to the naked eye! Let’s see where to look for it in the sky (Video)

Finally the Neanderthal comet is visible to the naked eye!
Who knows if 50,000 years ago the Neanderthal hominids saw it pass.
The fact is that now the comet has reached the magnitude (apparent brightness) of 5.9 just below the naked eye visibility (which is 6).

We are talking about C/2022 E3 ZTFcomet discovered the March 2, 2022. For its long revolution around the Sun, it has been nicknamed “the comet of the Neanderthals” and now it is visible even to the naked eye.
The comet can already be observed splendidly through binoculars or telescopes and fans of the universe are competing to see who takes the most spectacular photo, like the one taken by Dario Giannobile above Etna and chosen by NASA as photo of the day (by clicking on the name you can see it). The comet has one sparkling green foliage, combed by the solar wind and a splendid tail of yellowish dust and a smaller one, of ions, of blue color. It also has an anticoda, or a second tail opposite the first.

In addition to the news of its visibility without aiding optical instruments, a few days ago the exuberant activity of the sun hurled a stream of electrically charged particles towards the comet. A real mass ejection from the solar corona (the outermost part of our star) which in fact has snapped the comet’s splendid tail in two. This phenomenon is called “disconnection” and is due to the solar wind.
This event did not cause major problems for the comet, let alone its observability.

The comet will continue to light up more and more until it reaches the closest point to the earth between 1 and 2 February, at a “modest” distance of about 42 million km and will always be clearly visible in the northern skies as it will have become circumpolar .

But let’s see some data on this fascinating space object, coming from the distant Oort cloud (the forge of comets).
The C/2022 E3 ZTF, as also reported by the agency Handle has reached the perihelioni.e. the minimum distance from the sunthe January 12th.

First of all, we specify that in order to be able to see it with the naked eye, you must be in one place completely dark and with a clear and starry sky.
To see the comet, even with binoculars (recommended) we will have to look towards the constellation of Ursa Minor, in fact in these hours it is located just below the North Star.

As the astrophysicist said in an interview Gianluca Masi : “The comet is moving between the Bears, Major and Minor to then move more to the center of our sky. Visibility with the naked eye will be very modest, so much so that I sincerely recommend using at least binoculars“.

But you know, comets are very unpredictable objects, and this too could give us a truly unexpected show.

We wish to say thanks to the author of this short article for this amazing material

Neanderthal comet: it is visible to the naked eye! Let’s see where to look for it in the sky (Video)

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