See pictures of comet Leonard approaching the sun
On January 3, comet C/2021 A1 (Leonard) traveled 144 million km from our sun.
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Also known as C/2021 A1 Leonard, the fastest piece of rock, dust and ice currently traveling through the solar system.
Comets usually appear from nowhere, or more precisely, from the Oort cloud. This is the case for Leonard, who was discovered by astronomers in early January of this year, the US site Kismoto explains.
Leonard will be making “visits” to Earth’s orbit for a while, but it won’t take long. The comet is rapidly approaching perihelion, the closest point in its orbit to the Sun, which explains why it has a bright, dusty tail of gas. However, it has been eroding for years.
Furthermore, C/2021 A1 is currently faint and can only be seen from Earth through binoculars or telescopes.
Kismoto says Leonard’s closest approach will occur on January 3, when it will be 144 million kilometers from the sun.
If it doesn’t decay, it will embark on a 35,000-year journey to the edge of the solar system.
The flight of Comet Leonard has also been reported by space telescopes, especially the Solar Terrain Relations Observatory A (stereo-a), supported by NASA and Solar Orbiter, a joint project of NASA and the European Space Agency.