This illustration shows the distant comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein as it would appear in the outer solar system. Comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein is estimated to be about 1,000 times larger than a typical comet, making it the largest comet discovered in modern times. It has an extremely long orbit, traveling inland from the distant Oort Cloud over millions of years, and is the farthest comet to be discovered on its next path according to As reported by Digitartlends.
Distant comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein as it may appear in the outer solar system. Comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein is estimated to be about 1,000 times larger than a typical comet, making it the largest comet discovered in modern times. It has an extremely long orbit, traveling inland from the distant Oort cloud over millions of years, and is the farthest comet ever discovered on its next path.
Comets are ice balls that orbit the sun and release gases as they approach the sun, giving them a distinctive tail. It is usually 6 miles in diameter, but scientists recently discovered a huge comet with a diameter of 10 times.
It’s named the Bernardinelli-Bernstein comet after its discoverers, Pedro Bernardinelli and Gary Bernstein of the University of Pennsylvania. They discovered it while researching during six years of the Dark Energy Survey, an international collaboration to map the expansion of the universe.
The comet is between 60 and 120 miles across and is about 1,000 times larger than a typical comet, and is believed to be a visitor from the distant Oort Cloud – a hypothesized region of comets very far from Plutos orbit. (a measurement called the astronomical unit or AU), which is about 3.7 trillion miles.
It was possible to identify this comet even at its current distance of 20 astronomical units because it reflects a large amount of sunlight due to its huge size, it is approaching our sun, but do not worry, it will not come close to anywhere near Earth, this is the first time that it has been observed Incoming comet from a distance.
“We have the privilege of discovering perhaps the biggest comet we’ve ever seen — or at least the biggest of any well-studied comet — and finding it early enough for people to watch as it develops as it approaches and warms,” Bernstein said. “It hasn’t visited the solar system in more than 3 million years.”
Astronomers will get a better view of the comet as it approaches the sun. As comets approach the sun, they are heating up and their ice begins to evaporate, so this is a chance to watch the comet evolve. The comet will reach its closest point in 2031 – when it reaches a distance of 11 AU. From the Sun or slightly further from Saturn.