A recently discovered comet will be clearly visible from July 14 in the north-western sky. The comet which was discovered on March 27 is named as Comet Neowise after NASA’s Neowise infrared space telescope that was used in its discovery. Also known as C/2020 F3, the comet will be visible to naked eyes for 20 minutes every day for 20 days starting today. The comet will be visible for an hour before the dawn sky initially, but will change the timing for its regular appearance in the coming days.
“After July it will fade away very fast and will not be visible to the unaided eye. A pair of binoculars or a small telescope will enhance its visibility” said Dr. Subhendu Pattnaik, Deputy Director Pathani Samanta Planetarium in Bhubaneswar.
Neowise will be closest to the earth on July 22 at a distance of 64 million miles as it will be crossing the planet’s orbit. The comet is said to be “the brightest comet visible from the Northern Hemisphere in a quarter-century”. This is because the comet was at a close proximity to the sun for a brief period which caused dust and gas to burn off its surface and created a huge debris tail.
For India, the brightest comet will be visible in the northwestern sky—20 degrees from the horizon, after sunset. According to NASA, “the Neowise comet is about 5 km wide and its nucleus is covered with sooty dark particles left over from its formation near the birth of our solar system 4.6 billion years ago. The next time this comet will be visible from Earth will be the year 8,786 — which is almost over 6,000 years later.” So, witnessing such a rare phenomenon in an absolute no brainer.