Blink and you'll miss it: Rare comet captured by Abu Dhabi astronomy centre

It was filmed for a split second ― but there will be another chance to see it soon

Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) flies through the inner solar system. Photo: Nasa
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A comet that has not entered the solar system for 50,000 years was captured for a split second by an astronomy centre in Abu Dhabi.

Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) was filmed on Saturday by Al Khatim Observatory, operated by the International Astronomical Centre, outside the capital.

The speeding ball of ice and dust streaks across the sky in footage shared online.

But you haven't missed this once-in-a-lifetime chance to see it.

The comet is getting brighter as it moves closer to Earth and could be visible to the naked eye in the Northern Hemisphere, and by telescope in the Gulf.

“In late January and early February 2023, the comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) should be visible in the morning sky with binoculars and might become bright enough to see with the naked eye, especially from a dark area with clear skies,” Nasa said.

Dubai Astronomy Group will host an observation event on February 4 at the Al Qudra desert in Dubai, from 6.30pm to 9.30pm.

The event will include comet, Moon, Mars, Jupiter and deep sky objects telescope observation, an astrophotography session and sky mapping. Entrance fees range from Dh70 to Dh120.

Stargazers will also be able to watch the passing of the comet on YouTube.

Updated: January 15, 2023, 7:49 AM
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