Amateur astronomers are getting up early to witness a rare space phenomenon and the ‘Twitterverse’ is full of photos of the NEOWISE comet.
The comet can be seen in the early morning hours in the low horizon — weather permitting — and is the latest sky excitement since the solar eclipse in the summer of 2017.
Named for NASA’s Near Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer telescope that spotted it in March, the comet is orbiting around the sun in a trajectory that will bring it closer toward Earth as the month rolls on, according to NASA.
Comet NEOWISE and the city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada 🍁! I was up really early for this shot. It's not often that we get the opportunity to see or photograph a comet of this brightness and with a tail. I hope you like it!🤩 https://t.co/BFyxFFw2DE pic.twitter.com/sGZBiEVryM— Kerry LH💫 (@weatherandsky) July 5, 2020
Russian astronaut Ivan Vagner took photos from the International Space Station, calling it the brightest comet of the last seven years.
Here on earth, stargazers are capturing photos of the tiny bright spot with its distinctive “tail” from Toronto to Arizona.
According to EarthSky.org the comet can be seen just as dawn is brighting the sky but later in the month will appear higher in the sky.
“Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) is up at dawn now; it will be highest in the dawn sky around July 11. Then it will gradually approach the horizon each day. By mid July (around July 12-15), the comet will become visible at dusk (just after sunset), low in the northwest horizon,” notes EarthSky.org.
During the next revolution I tried to capture the C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) comet a bit closer, the brightest one over the last 7 years.— Ivan Vagner (@ivan_mks63) July 4, 2020
Its tail is quite clearly visible from the @Space_Station!#ISS #comet #NEOWISE pic.twitter.com/FnWkCummD6
NASA is also keeping track of NEOWISE. Find out more here.