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A comet hurtling towards Earth: why is it special?

A comet hurtling towards Earth: why is it special?

Time and again, special celestial phenomena over Germany create extraordinary moments. As is the case in the summer of 2022, there will always be a Perseid meteor to watch for. Now astronomers are reporting a new comet. C/2023 A3 is heading toward Earth, and it could cause a real stir.

The last celestial body to approach our planet was C/2022 E3 (ZTF) in early February inrlp.de I mentioned. A comet with a green glow may have passed by it on its last visit in the Neanderthal era. According to the portal, the new discovery of scientists is approaching space.com The Earth is currently moving at an estimated speed of 56 thousand kilometers per hour. The portal covers news related to space exploration, innovation and astronomy.

Comet C/2023 A3 could outshine our stars

According to the Minor planet centersThe comet can be seen with the naked eye from October 2024. The special feature of C/2023 A3? It could be brighter than the stars we know.

Space.com assumes it would have reached a brightness of between -0.7 and -5 during the time window of its flyby. For comparison, the brightness of the green comet that appeared in February 2023 was about +4.6, according to space.com. Astronomers explain that the lower the size, the brighter it appears.

If current calculations are to be believed, he will have reached his closest approach to Earth on October 13, 2024. It is likely that the distance he has traveled with him is still valid. 70.5 million kilometers.

Scientists warn about the unpredictability of comets

Such as, among other things, Frankfurter Rundschau He writes, The predictions are based on some facts already known about the comet. All experts hope that C/2023 A3 will be able to shine and be visible with the naked eye in the night sky.

Name of the comet: C/2023 A3
Shortest distance to Earth: 70.5 million kilometers
Date of approach to Earth: October 13, 2024
Discovery: January 9, 2023

Scientists derive this information from the comet’s existing radiative force. According to the report, it belongs to the category of long-period comets. Despite all the euphoria, scientists warn against relying too much on current knowledge.

Ultimately, the behavior of such comets is unpredictable. After all, such long-period comets often break up as soon as they approach the Sun.

Preview image: © Pixabay

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