A video taken by amateur astronomer Matthijs Burgmeijer shows a comet with the potential to become visible to the naked eye in just a few weeks streaking brightly across a background of stars.

Why it matters: The comet — named Comet C/2019 Y4 (ATLAS) — was discovered in December and since then has brightened beautifully as it started to fly closer to the Sun.

  • Comet ATLAS is expected to make its closest approach to the Sun in late May, potentially brightening to the point where observers in the Northern Hemisphere can see it without a telescope or binoculars.
  • Southern Hemisphere skywatchers should be able to see the comet after it swings around the Sun and before it heads out of the inner solar system, Burgmeijer told Axios.

But, but, but: Understanding comet behavior isn't an exact science, and Comet ATLAS might break apart before it brightens enough to put on a truly spectacular show.

  • "We simply have to wait and see how it will develop over the coming weeks," Burgmeijer said. "Comets are notoriously unpredictable."

Go deeper: An interstellar comet revealed

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Updated 36 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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52 mins ago - Health

Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Trump has not attended a White House coronavirus task force meeting in “several months,” NIAID director Anthony Fauci told MSNBC on Friday.

Why it matters: At the beginning of the pandemic, the task force, led by Vice President Mike Pence, met every day, but in the "last several weeks," members have held virtual meetings once a week, Fauci said, even as the number of new cases continues to surge in the country.

2 hours ago - Health

How to help save 130,000 lives

People wear face masks outside Grand Central Terminal in New York City. Photo: Noam Galai/Getty Images

Nearly 130,000 fewer people will die of COVID-19 this winter if 95% of Americans wear face masks in public, according to research published Friday.

Why it matters: “Increasing mask use is one of the best strategies that we have right now to delay the imposition of social distancing mandates," Dr. Christopher Murray of the University of Washington told the N.Y. Times.