December 12, 2018: 46P/Wirtanen Comet

Posted by Jandyre Garcia on

The 46P/Wirtanen Comet may brighten enough in December to be spotted easily with the unaided eye. If it does attain naked-eye visibility, it will be the brightest comet seen from the Northern Hemisphere in more than five years. The icy interloper will reach perihelion—its closest approach to the sun—on December 12 and will be traveling through the bright winter constellation Taurus, the bull.

Only four days after it slingshots around the sun, the comet will make its closest approach to Earth, coming within 7.2 million miles of the planet on its way toward the outer solar system. At this point, the comet should be easy to hunt down as it passes by the brilliant Pleiades and Hyades star clusters.


Share this post



← Older Post