- The recently discovered comet called C/2020 F3, also known as NEOWISE after the NASA telescope that discovered it, will make its closest approach to the Earth on July 22. On the day, the comet, which takes 6,800 years to complete one lap around its orbit, will be at a distance of 64 million miles or 103 million kilometers while crossing Earth’s outside orbit.
- On July 3, the comet was closest to the sun at 43 million km. On this day, the comet cruised inside Mercury’s orbit and, due to its proximity to the sun, its outer layer was released creating an atmosphere – referred to as coma – of gas and dust from its icy surface. This atmosphere sometimes leads to formation of a bright tail of debris that can extend for thousands or millions of kilometres.