Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) is forecast to reach the brightest point in its 2023 apparition on 1 February. At that time, it will lie at a distance of 1.16 AU from the Sun, and at a distance of 0.28 AU from the Earth.
The events that comprise the 2022–2023 apparition of C/2022 E3 (ZTF) are as follows:
|12 Jan 2023||Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) passes perihelion|
|01 Feb 2023||Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) passes perigee|
|01 Feb 2023||Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) reaches peak brightness|
The table below lists the times when C/2022 E3 (ZTF) will be visible from Cambridge day-by-day through its apparition:
|11 Jan 2023||Corona Borealis||Visible from 01:38 until 05:58|
Highest at 05:58, 65° above E horizon
|13 Jan 2023||Bootes||Visible from 01:18 until 05:58|
Highest at 05:58, 67° above E horizon
|15 Jan 2023||Bootes||Visible from 00:54 until 05:57|
Highest at 05:57, 69° above E horizon
|17 Jan 2023||Bootes||Visible from 00:25 until 05:56|
Highest at 05:56, 71° above E horizon
|19 Jan 2023||Bootes||Visible from 23:49 until 05:55|
Highest at 05:55, 73° above NE horizon
|21 Jan 2023||Draco||Visible from 22:59 until 05:55|
Highest at 05:55, 73° above NE horizon
|23 Jan 2023||Draco||Visible from 17:56 until 05:53|
Highest at 05:53, 71° above N horizon
|25 Jan 2023||Ursa Minor||Visible from 17:57 until 05:54|
Highest at 05:54, 66° above N horizon
|27 Jan 2023||Ursa Minor||Visible all night|
Highest at 05:16, 58° above N horizon
|29 Jan 2023||Camelopardalis||Visible all night|
Highest at 02:15, 52° above N horizon
|31 Jan 2023||Camelopardalis||Visible all night|
Highest at 22:08, 57° above N horizon
|02 Feb 2023||Camelopardalis||Visible from 18:00 until 05:53|
Highest at 20:39, 69° above N horizon
|04 Feb 2023||Auriga||Visible from 18:05 until 04:17|
Highest at 20:01, 80° above N horizon
|06 Feb 2023||Auriga||Visible from 18:10 until 02:46|
Highest at 19:39, 89° above S horizon
|08 Feb 2023||Auriga||Visible from 18:14 until 01:49|
Highest at 19:22, 81° above S horizon
|10 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:17 until 01:06|
Highest at 19:09, 74° above S horizon
|12 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:19 until 00:32|
Highest at 18:57, 68° above S horizon
|14 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:21 until 00:03|
Highest at 18:47, 64° above S horizon
|16 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:24 until 23:39|
Highest at 18:38, 61° above S horizon
|18 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:26 until 23:17|
Highest at 18:29, 58° above S horizon
|20 Feb 2023||Taurus||Visible from 18:28 until 22:57|
Highest at 18:28, 55° above S horizon
The chart below shows the path of C/2022 E3 (ZTF) over the course of its apparition, as calculated from the orbital elements published by the Minor Planet Center (MPC). It is available for download, either on dark background, in PNG, PDF or SVG formats, or on a light background, in PNG, PDF or SVG formats. It was produced using StarCharter.
Comets are intrinsically highly unpredictable objects, since their brightness depends on the scattering of sunlight from dust particles in the comet's coma and tail. This dust is continually streaming away from the comet's nucleus, and its density at any particular time is governed by the rate of sublimation of the ice in the comet's nucleus, as it is heated by the Sun's rays. It also depends on the amount of dust that is mixed in with that ice. This is very difficult to predict in advance, and can be highly variable even between successive apparitions of the same comet.
In consequence, while the future positions of comets are usually known with a high degree of confidence, their future brightnesses are not. For most comets, we do not publish any magnitude estimates at all. For the few comets where we do make estimates, we generally prefer the BAA's magnitude parameters to those published by the Minor Planet Center, since they are typically updated more often.
Based on the magnitude parameters published for this comet by the BAA Comet Section, we estimate that it may be around mag 5 on 1 February 2023. This estimate is based on observations that the BAA has received from amateur astronomers, assuming that its current level of activity will remain constant.
The comet's position on 1 February 2023 will be:
|Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF)||06h38m20s||72°40'N||Camelopardalis||4.7|
The coordinates are given in J2000.0.
The sky on 1 Feb 2023
|The sky on 1 February 2023|
11 days old
All times shown in EST.
This event was automatically generated on the basis of orbital elements published by the Minor Planet Center (MPC) , and is updated whenever new elements become available. It was last updated on 19 Aug 2023.
© Andy Roberts 1997. Pictured comet is C/1995 O1 Hale-Bopp.