A Newly Discovered Comet Will Be Visible in the Night Sky This Month


A newly discovered comet will be visible to stargazers in the Northern Hemisphere in January. Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) may even be visible with the naked eye due to its brightness.

The comet was first spotted last March as it passed near Jupiter. It will pass through the inner solar system, coming closest to the Earth on Feb. 2. It won’t be quite as bright as 2020’s Comet Neowise, NASA says, but observers have a good chance to view C/2022 since it’s still a fairly bright comet.

Space.com notes that comets are most visible when the light of the moon is dimmed, and suggests the new moon on Jan. 21 as a potentially good date for skywatchers to catch a glimpse of the comet.

“Observers in the Northern Hemisphere will find the comet in the morning sky, as it moves swiftly toward the northwest during January,” said Preston Dyches from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in the space agency’s monthly What’s Up broadcast.

NASA shared a photo of the bright green comet on its APOD (Astronomy Picture of the Day) site on Christmas Eve.