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'Christmas comet' zooming 'near' Earth this weekend

Published: Dec. 13, 2018 at 8:58 PM CST
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The year's brightest comet will fly across the night sky Sunday night.

The comet, "46P/Wirtanent," dubbed "The Christmas Comet" is expected to come within about 7.2 million miles of Earth.

reports the comet will be among the 10 closest to approach Earth in modern times. It could also be bright enough for people to see with the naked eye. However, areas with more light pollution won't be able to see it as well as more rural, out-in-the-open areas.

reports the comet's closest approach to Earth will be Sunday and people should be able to view it between 9:30 and 10 p.m.

Harold Henderson with the Lake Afton Observatory says the comet will be positioned almost directly opposite the sun from our location on Earth.

"As the sun is setting around 5 p.m. it's coming up over the eastern horizon like most comets," Henderson said. "It's not bright like a star or planet or the moon...it's what we call dim fuzzy things."

Henderson says the best chance to see the comet is away from lights in a rural area. Here are a couple apps that can help you find the comet:

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