Science & Tech

Comet Leonard may have spawned meteor shower on Venus

Astrophotographer Chris Schur captures this stunning photo of Comet Leonard on Dec. 4, 2021 from Payson, Arizona using a 10-inch Newtonian telescope and 60-minute camera exposure. (Image credit: Chris Schur)

Comet Leonard may be sparking meteor showers at Venus this weekend during a relatively close approach of the comet to the planet.

Officially known as comet C/2021 A1, also known as Comet Leonard was discovered in January by astronomer Gregory J. Leonard of the Mount Lemmon Infrared Observatory in Arizona. Its close pass of Venus this weekend gives skywatchers a marker in the evening sky to help spot the comet, which is at binocular visibility from Earth and may be just barely bright enough to be visible to the naked eye under clear, dark skies.

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