Astronomers discovered the rare comet on March 2, 2022. It was discovered using the Wide Field Survey Camera at the Zwicky Transient Facility in California. On January 12, it was seen closest to Earth.
Image credit source: Newsweek
A funny thing happened in the history of astronomy. A rare comet passed very close to Earth. This event is interesting because it is the first time it has happened in the last 50 years. It was observed to glow as it approached Earth. This rare comet is called a green comet. It has also been named C/2022 E3 in scientific terms.
Astronomers discovered this rare comet on March 2, 2022. It was discovered using the Wide Field Survey Camera at the Zwicky Transient Facility in California. On January 12, it was seen closest to Earth.
What is a comet?
Comets are part of the solar system. They are made of dust, rock, ice and gas. which appear as chunks. They revolve around the sun like different planets. Thus millions of comets are orbiting the Sun. They are also called tail stars. Comets rotate faster than meteors.
While orbiting around the Sun, they come close to the Sun and start burning after being heated. Thus, they are seen as a shiny body and when they move they look like a broken star.
How comed different green?
- That’s why it’s called a dirty snowball: It approaches the Earth. When its heat increases, it is seen to burn. As it gets closer to the Sun, its icy interior begins to rapidly retreat. That is why it is also called dirty snowball.
- Made in the Paleolithic Period: According to the data obtained from the telescope, the age of this comet is about 50 thousand years. It is believed to have formed in the solar system during the Paleolithic. It must have come to the fore when Neanderthals appeared on Earth.
- The first picture was taken like this: The first image of the green comet was taken by the Himalayan Chandra Telescope in Ladakh, operated by the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore. The first images were taken when the inner planets were seen moving towards the Sun. It looked like a tail at its back. Because of which it is also called a tail star.
- On February 10, Mars will approach: As EarthSky reports, such an event will happen again on February 10, 2023, when the comet will pass close to Mars. Astronomers will once again have the opportunity to capture this event on camera. Scientists find this phenomenon very interesting because the planet is very old in terms of age. Until now, very few such old comets have been discovered. So this event was important.