This dazzling rare comet makes its closest approach to Earth tonight

The Comet NEOWISE as seen in mid July from Mt. Pinos about 90 miles northwest of downtown L.A

Discovered just this March, Neowise gets its name from NASA's Near-Earth Objects Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, the telescope through which it was found.

Adrian Campos captures the Neowise Comet with Thomas Mountain in view.

NASA explains that, "This very close passage by the Sun is cooking the comet's outermost layers, causing gas and dust to erupt off the icy surface and creating a large tail of debris". The comet will closest to the Earth on July 22 at a distance of 63 million miles from Earth. But for those who want to be able to witness the passing of Comet NEOWISE, it will be visible throughout the rest of the month, and it will not return for another 6,800 years. After that, sky watchers might need to use a telescope or pair of binoculars to spot the comet.

Just after the comet's closest move by Earth on Thursday it will increase a minor increased in the sky on July 24 and 25, in circumstance you skip the precise flyby day.


Although the comet will not appear as bright as it did a couple of days before, it will still have a distinct glow around it.

You will find continue to a slender risk, for the most optimistic of us, that Neowise might brighten substantially to become a so-identified as "terrific comet" that's quickly seen and spectacular to see with the bare eye. While there's no strict definition of what a great comet is, it's generally agreed that we haven't seen one since Hale-Bopp.

The comet will be visible towards the northwest and western edges of the sky. A fantastic rule of thumb is to come across the big dipper and start out on the lookout underneath it. On-line assets like TheSkyLive also supply identical night sky maps to help your comet quest.

If you never catch the comet prior to it inevitably fades absent in August or sooner, you'll have to wait around awhile for its up coming excursion by means of the internal solar program, at the moment approximated to materialize in the calendar year 8786.

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