November 24, 2021 – 11:09
Only one or two comets are clearly visible every ten to fifteen years. The arrival of Comet Leonard will be a brilliant spectacle under the open sky. The opportunity to see it will be unique, as its orbit will then eject it out of the solar system.
After the longest lunar eclipse of the century, new astronomical events appear on the calendar, before 2021 comes to an end. One of the most anticipated phenomena will be the passage of Comet Leonard, which can be seen with the naked eye in December.
The last comment that aroused the admiration of the whole world was Neowise, who reached its closest point to Earth, during the year 2020. And now, before the end of 2021, we will be visited by Comet Leonard, who can be admired at naked eye and will pass 35 kilometers from Earth according to NASA.
This is Comet Leonard
A comet is a celestial body made up of ice, dust, and rocks that orbits the Sun following different elliptical paths. It is for this reason that every certain period of time, comets pass close to Earth.
In this case, Leonard follows an elliptical path that passes near the Earth every 80 thousand years, so this opportunity will be unique to admire with the naked eye.
Leonard was first seen on January 3, 2021 from the Mount Lemmon Observatory in Arizona. Its trajectory brought it closer from beyond Neptune, and it takes thousands of years to complete a period around the Sun.
Its name corresponds to that of the astronomer who discovered it, named Greg Leonard. It was he who was able to find the location of this collection of dust, ice and rocks; it realized that it was between the orbit of Jupiter and Mars, and then headed towards the inner planets of the solar system.
When will Comet Leonard pass?
Comet Leonard is on its last leg before passing close to Earth, is approaching an average speed of 70.6 kilometers per second and is about to reach the orbit of Mars to get closer to Earth.
When this happens, the comet can be seen with the naked eye before sunrise, of course the weather conditions must be optimal.
Comet Leonard will position itself close to our planet on December 12, 2021. The moment of closest approach will occur on this date at 5:54 a.m., Argentina time, from which time it can be seen with the naked eye.