Hubble brings closer look at our amazing comet

Hubble brings closer look at our amazing comet

Summary: The Hubble Space Telescope showed more details of Comet ISON as it flew toward the sun on its way to possibly give us an incredible show later this year.

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TOPICS: Nasa / Space
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  • (Image: NASA, ESA, J.-Y. Li (Planetary Science Institute), and the Hubble Comet ISON Imaging Science Team)

    Comet ISON

    NASA released the photos of the Comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) taken on April 10 by the Hubble Space Telescope, when it was slightly closer to the Earth than Jupiter. Plus, later in this gallery, we'll show a surprise comet finding from Jupiter.

    Why is this so special? This comet could actually outshine the moon as it approaches the sun, getting closest on November 28 this year. It could also be spectacular in the northern hemisphere on its return trip to the outer reaches of the Solar System.

    Or it could just fizzle out. Remember Comet Kohoutek?

    The nucleus of comet itself is only 3-4 miles in diameter but the dusty head of the comet is about 3,100 miles across. The current dust trail is 57,000 miles long, but will increase in size as it approaches the sun as frozen gases will be released.

    Comet ISON is named after the International Scientific Optical Network, which is "a group of observatories in 10 countries who have organized to detect, monitor, and track objects in space. ISON is managed by the Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics, part of the Russian Academy of Sciences," according to NASA. Russian astronomers Vitali Nevski and Artyom Novichonok found the comet in September 2012.

  • (Image: NASA, ESA, J.-Y. Li (Planetary Science Institute), and the Hubble Comet ISON Imaging Science Team)

    Inner structure

    Here's a contrast-enhanced image of Comet ISON, which shows the inner structure of the inner coma.

Topic: Nasa / Space

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6 comments
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  • Comet ISON

    I'll get the lemon-scented dust spray to clean the comet dust off my end tables!
    Andylb
  • Comet ISON

    I'll get the lemon-scented dust spray to clean the comet dust off my end tables!
    Andylb
  • spam spam spam

    seeing we can spam but not use anything that might be construed as obscene language so I'll make mine simple. Please send me $18,000 so i can py off my ex once and for all....... :)
    winddrift03
  • Photos

    On image 6, please correct "sights" to "sites" then make yourself take a timeout...
    frabjous
  • Slideshow can be improved

    Slideshow can be improved by not reloading whole page to change photos
    rk12345
  • ISON approach

    I have marked my cal. for 11/28 and pray for clear a sky.
    dancac