Newly discovered comet to be visible on Feb 1-2


The comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) is expected to be visible to the naked eye on February 1-2 this year, the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT) said.

In its Facebook post on Monday, NARIT said the comet will make its closest approach to the Sun on Thursday, and will get close to the Earth between February 1 and 2.

"If the comet continues to be bright, it could be visible in dark skies to the naked eye," NARIT said, adding that people can observe the comet with binoculars or telescope if it fades.

Citing the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NARIT added that observers in the Northern Hemisphere will be able to find the comet in January, while it will become visible to observers in the Southern Hemisphere in early February.

The comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) was discovered by astronomers Bryce Bolin and Frank Masci using the Zwicky Transient Facility survey on March 2 last year.

Astronomers initially identified the comet as an asteroid before realising it was a comet as its brightness has increased since November last year.

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