C/2022 E3 (ZTF)

C/2022 E3 (ZTF)

The "green comet" of 2023

C/2022 E3 (ZTF) is a long-period comet that was discovered by the Zwicky Transit Facility (ZTF) on March 2, 2022 and passed closest to Earth on February 1, 2023. The comet could be seen with the naked eye under clear, dark conditions in early February 2023 was widely covered by the news media across the world. The comet became known as the “green comet” due to the distinctive green glow of its nucleus, which was caused by the interaction of sunlight with molecules of the comet atmosphere, including in particular molecules of diatomic carbon and cyanogen. The comet originated in the Oort cloud of comets that surrounds the Solar System and will not return to inner Solar System for a very long time, perhaps millions of years from now.

Condor obtained this image of C/2022 E3 (ZTF) through the Sloan g', r', and i' filters on the night of February 5, 2023 over a period of around 90 minutes. Because the comet was moving rapidly at the time, the background stars appear streaked in the image.

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Date of acquisition

February 5, 2023


g', r', i'

Exposure time

Approximately 30 minutes per filter


Condor team and National Science Foundation

National Science Foundation

The Condor Array Telescope gratefully acknowledges funding from the National Science Foundation.

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