NASA confirms comet sighting spotted by scientists in the Neowise mission. Two objects were discovered, one has been confirmed to be a comet. The other object could either be an asteroid or a comet.
Although comets are linked to destruction, these heavenly bodies are not a threat to earth. Both heavenly bodies may be visible from Earth with a pair of binoculars.
NASA Confirms Comet Sighting
The Neowise mission is NASA's tool for discovering celestial bodies that could threaten Earth. This time, the mission spotted two bodies, namely, C/2016 U1 NEOWISE and 2016 WF9.
C/2016 U1 NEOWISE, the heavenly body confirmed as a comet, has an extremely elliptical orbit. As it makes its way closer to the sun, the comet started emitting water and dust. This comet is estimated to make its slingshot on Jan. 14. The comet will not reappear for thousands of years. Although the comet can be viewed at the night sky, NASA scientists cannot confirm its brightness.
Neowise Mission Discoveries
NASA confirms comet sighting and the discovery of another celestial body. The 2016 WF9 was also spotted by scientists. Since it has no visible tail, some propose that it is an asteroid. There are also some who believe that it is a comet and only the core remains, hence, the absent tail. Based on the report by Tech2, 2016 WF9 crossed Jupiter's orbit and passed through the asteroid belt. Its trip across the solar system may be the reason for its missing tail.
While comets may be associated with a bad omen such as war and destruction, it can also be beautiful. The remains of a comet can result in a wonderful display of light. The Quadrantid Meteor Shower is, according to Space Coast Daily, the most intense annual meteor shower. The display of light will be spectacular but brief.
Scouting the night skies could show a lot of great heavenly scenes this January. NASA confirms comet sighting, a meteor shower, and many other spectacular events for 2017.