2014 Comet Jacques: SONEAR Team in Brazil Spots New Comet C/2014 E2, Closest Approach to the Sun to Occur on June 29

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By Jenalyn Villamarin | March 17, 2014 3:30 PM EST

The Brazilian astronomers have announced their discovery of a new and very bright comet called C/2014 E2 (Jacques) with the use of the SONEAR (Southern Observatory for Near Earth Asteroids Research) close to Oliveira, Brazil. On Thursday, March 13, Cristovao Jacques, E. Pimentel and J. Barros detected their second comet through the CCD images captured with a a 0.45-meter (17.7-inch) wide-field reflector at the SONEAR observatory.

Astronomers at the Rmanzacco Observatory shared as well a confirmation image on the Comet Jacques. Click HERE to see photo. In the Universe Today report, the preliminary orbit on the new comet point out that its closest approach to the Sun will take place on June 29, 2014 at a distance of 56 million miles.

The report further added that Comet Jacques could have a close flyby from Venus at 8.4 million miles in July. "If a comet approached Earth this closely so soon after perihelion, it would be a magnificent sight. Of course, watching from Venus isn't recommended. Even if we could withstand its extreme heat and pressure cooker atmosphere, the planet's perpetual cloud cover guarantees overcast skies 24/7," the report noted.

The new Comet Jacques has been trailing across the northern Centaurus since getting spotted and in the next couple of nights, the comet will span the border with Hydra. The comet will be visible low in the southern sky around for the northern hemisphere spectators from approximately midnight until 2 am.

Those who live on a Caribbean island and points south will have better chances of viewing the newly discovered comet. The comet's brightness has been estimated to around magnitude +11.5 - 12 or within range of an 8-inch (20-cm) or larger telescope.

The Comet C/2014 E2 (Jacques) will be approaching the Sun as well as the Earth soon and the space object will continue to brighten up as it slowly increases altitude in the night sky. Abruptly after perihelion, the comet will be shining at its brightest at about magnitude +10-10.5 and  then nearly maintain that brightness as swings north from Orion into Perseus from mid-July to mid-August.

Comet Jacques' closest approach to planet Earth will take place on August 29 and 30 at 54 million miles (87 million km). Then, it will join the Comet Oukameiden which is calculated to reach binocular visibility in late August 2014.

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