Scientists have identified a colossal “horned” comet, 3 times bigger than Mount Everest, heading to Earth. This extraordinary celestial object, known as comet 12P/Pons-Brooks, has garnered recognition for its peculiar cold volcanic activities. Initially discovered by Jean-Louis Pons in 1812, this comet is one of just 20 comets recognized to have active ice volcanoes.

The comet boasts an immense diameter of 18.6 miles, equivalent to that of a small city. To put this into perspective, Earth’s highest peak, Mount Everest, reaches a height of about 5.5 miles, or 29,029 feet.

The comet’s explosion can be attributed to solar radiation affecting its interior, leading to increased pressure. Consequently, this pressure caused its icy materials to be expelled through openings in its shell, forming a distinctive horn-like structure.

According to Richard Miles, a member of the British Astronomical Association (BAA), the comet’s unique shape, characterized by two ‘horns,’ might result from an irregularly shaped cryovolcanic vent, potentially with some obstructions causing material to be expelled in an unusual flow pattern.

Several experts have pointed out that the comet’s irregular coma shape gives it an appearance reminiscent of a spacecraft. From science fiction, notably resembling the Millennium Falcon from the Star Wars franchise.

The BAA has been closely monitoring comet 12P, and on October 5, scientists observed a second explosion. This event caused the comet to appear significantly brighter due to the additional light reflecting from its expanded coma.

Images of this explosion were captured by Jose Manuel Perez Redondo using a 2.0-meter Faulkes Telescope North located on the Hawaiian island of Maui. While the comet is presently on a course that brings it closer to Earth, it will be some time before it approaches our planet.

As per LiveScience, the comet is expected to reach its nearest point to Earth on April 21, 2024. Afterward, it will be propelled back into the solar system and won’t reappear until the year 2095.