Rare Comet To Sail Past Earth For 1st Time Since The Stone Age

A comet, an asteroid, a meteorite glows, enters the earth's atmosphere. Attack of the meteorite. Meteor Rain. Kameta tail. End of the world. Elements of this image furnished by NASA. Mixed media.

Photo: Getty Images

More than 50,000 years after it last lit up the night sky, a rare green comet is set to make a return appearance outside of Earth's atmosphere.

The comet, which is saddled with the forgettable name "C/2022 E3 (ZTF)," is in an orbit that takes it past the sun and into the outer reaches of the solar system -- which is why it hasn't flown by Earth since the Stone Age, NASA reports. It's due to make its triumphant return on Wednesday or Thursday, according to EarthSky.

That's not to say Earth is in any danger. At its closest point, the icy comet will still be about 27 million miles away from the planet -- which is 100 times the distance between Earth and the moon, EarthSky reports.

What's the coolest thing you've seen happen in the sky?

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