Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF)

This comet was discovered in March 2022 by the Zwicky Transient Facility telescope on Palomar Mountain in California. Known in the media as the “green comet,” ZTF orbits the sun with a period of 50,000 years. Depending upon its interaction with the sun this time around, it may make another appearance in the year 52,023 (or thereabouts) or it may get thrown out of the solar system altogether.

The green color is due to the light emitted by diatomic carbon atoms that are excited by ultraviolet light from the sun.

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