Tag Archives: Comets

Comets: where do they come from?

A comet is made of a nucleus (inner core), coma (cloudy envelope around the nucleus), and then a tail. Where exactly do these beautiful, fast-moving cosmic snowballs come from? Scientists are able to trace comets that we see in the inner solar system by retracing their orbits. Through this, scientists believe that comets come fromContinue reading “Comets: where do they come from?” Continue reading

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So Close, Yet From So Far ☄️

The above image is of Comet Atlas, which is a comet that has been getting closer and much, much brighter over the past few weeks. If it doesn’t fizzle out, Comet Atlas will be able to be seen by the naked eye in as little time as a couple of weeks, at places without much … Continue reading So Close, Yet From So Far ☄️ Continue reading

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Comets as Omens of the Future

Comets have been noticed by ancient civilizations for millenia, and, like many other celestial bodies, were viewed as omens of the future. Comets in particular were considered bad omens. The most famous example is Halley’s Comet, seen in 1066 by the English and theorized to have been an omen for Harold II of England’s death. … Continue reading Comets as Omens of the Future Continue reading

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Comet tails: an origin story

4.6 billion years ago, our solar system was just a big cloud of gas and dust. A lot of it gathered together and formed the sun. Most… Read more “Comet tails: an origin story” Continue reading

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Kuiper Belt Objects…What Are They?

Kuiper Belt Objects are unique in that they have different compositions than most asteroids and different orbits than most comets. This has led astronomers to contemplate the identity of Kuiper Belt Objects. Surprisingly, the answer isn’t so clear. Asteroids are mostly composed of rock while comets are mostly composed of rock and ice. Most Kuiper … Continue reading “Kuiper Belt Objects…What Are They?” Continue reading

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Comets

Comets get the “dirty snowball” nickname from their composition: they are a little bit of rocky dust, a good amount of chunks of ice, and a pinch of more complex compounds.  Spectra analysis reveals the presence of hydrogen compounds within comets, and the existence of hydrogen compounds like water and the presence of carbon dioxide … Continue reading Comets Continue reading

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The End of the World?

There are so many objects in the solar system that coexist with Earth in this universe. These objects range range from other planets, moons, asteroids and comets. But what would happen if they stopped playing nice with each other and ended up colliding? Specifically, what would happen if a comet hit the Earth? Well, that … Continue reading The End of the World? Continue reading

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Dirty Snowballs

Comets are often referred to as “dirty snowballs“. That is because they are made up of a lot of many components that a dirty snowball would also consist of, and more! Many comets consist of dust, ice, carbon dioxide, ammonia, methane, and many more other components. When a comet gets close to the sun, some … Continue reading Dirty Snowballs Continue reading

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Deep Impact: Mission to a Comet

Exactly twelve years ago on July 4th, 2005, a NASA Spacecraft called the Deep Impact landed on Comet Temple 1, … More Continue reading

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Blog 5 – Comet Composition

Comets are the relatively small, icy objects that orbit a star.  They are classified as “small solar system bodies”, as are asteroids.  Along with ice, they contain rocky dust and other complex chemicals, leading them to be described as “dirty snowballs.”  Spectra can be used to determine the composition of comets.  From them, we know […] Continue reading

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