Technology: Brightest comet of 2018 to make an appearance in mid-December - PressFrom - US
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TechnologyBrightest comet of 2018 to make an appearance in mid-December

08:40  10 december  2018
08:40  10 december  2018 Source:   nbcnews.com

Brightest comet of the year will zoom near Earth next week

Brightest comet of the year will zoom near Earth next week Skywatchers will get a special treat next week as the year’s brightest comet flies across the night sky.

The comet 46P/Wirtanen was one of three comets discovered by Carl Wirtanen in 1948 at the Lick Observatory in California. Stargazers have something extra to look forward to this holiday season: The brightest comet of 2018 will pass closest to Earth on Dec .

appearance by Comet 46P/Wirtanen — hailed as the brightest comet to light up the sky in 2018 Just a few short days after the Geminid meteor shower peaks on December 13, star gazers will be By comparison, Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner — which is about to make an important entrance on.

Brightest comet of 2018 to make an appearance in mid-December© Alex Cherney Image: Comet 46P

Stargazers have something extra to look forward to this holiday season: The brightest comet of 2018 will pass closest to Earth on Dec. 16.

The comet 46P/Wirtanen, which passes Earth every 5.4 years, was one of three comets discovered by Carl Wirtanen in 1948 at the Lick Observatory in California. This orbit will be one of the closest comet orbits to Earth since the 1950s, according to Space.com.

Comets are "loosely bound masses of ice, dust and rock." The central core of the structure is often only a few miles across. These cosmic phenoms usually have tails that are a result of the dust and gases that are spewed when comets heat up as they near the sun. Currently, NASA reports that there are 3,535 known comets.

What Is the Geminid Meteor Shower?

What Is the Geminid Meteor Shower? The celestial event is caused by a stream of cosmic debris falling toward Earth at incredible speeds.

Stargazers have something extra to look forward to this holiday season: The brightest comet of 2018 will pass closest to Earth on Dec . The comet 46P/Wirtanen, which passes Earth every 5.4 years, was one of three comets discovered by Carl Wirtanen in 1948 at the Lick Observatory in California.

The comet should be brightest on December 16, as bright as the star in the constellation of the Little Dipper’ s handle, according to NASA. But even now, it’ s currently the brightest comet in the night sky, and the brightest of 2018 . The University of Maryland’ s astronomy department said that Comet 46P.

The comet 46P will likely not have a large observable tail because of its relatively small size, according to Space.com. It measures 0.68 miles in diameter, one-tenth the size of the popular Halley's Comet. Currently, 46P is a small blueish object in the night sky.

At its closest point to the Earth, the comet will be at 30 times the distance the Earth is from the moon — around 7.2 million miles away — and should be observable with the naked eye from a location with little light pollution. The comet will be passing in the Southern sky, near the constellation Orion, according to CBC. Although it may be seen with the naked eye, the best ways to get a glimpse of this comet will be with binoculars or a telescope.

On Dec. 12, 46P will pass the closest in its orbit to the sun, and it will be at its closest to Earth at 8:06 a.m. ET on Dec. 16, according to Space.com.

'Pizzagate' restaurant survives arson attempt.
Investigators say the suspect is a "white male, 25 - 30 years old, with blonde hair, mustache and a beard" saying that the man was "wanted for questioning." According to the Washington Post, an unidentified patron set fire to a curtain in the back of Comet Ping Pong on Thursday evening. The fire was extinguished by staffers and no one was injured. Because investigators found burned matches and a bottle of charcoal lighter fluid, investigators made the "unanimous" decision that the fire was caused by arson, according to the Post's reporting.

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