Free Republic 3rd Qtr 2020 Fundraising Target: $88,000 Receipts & Pledges to-date: $6,041
6%  
Woo hoo!! And now less than $120 to reach 7%!! Thank you all very much!!

Keyword: comet

Brevity: Headers | « Text »
  • Death from above? Fireball may have destroyed ancient Syrian village

    06/21/2020 9:53:35 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 52 replies
    Live Science ^ | 20 June 2020 | Nola Taylor Redd
    13,000 years ago, something very bad seems to have occurred, leaving a layer of carbon suggesting dramatic fires. But for much of the last decade, scientists inspecting the remnants of the village have debated what happened, unable to decide whether the carbon formed during an airburst or during more mundane fires among the thatched huts. So Moore decided to reexamine the glass in more detail. His analysis of the glass composition matched a 2012 finding claiming an airburst had destroyed Abu Hureyra, suggesting that the villagers' bucolic lifestyle ended suddenly when one or more fragments from a passing comet exploded...
  • Stargazing: Comet Swan is coming to town

    05/12/2020 7:48:41 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 13 replies
    post-gazette.com ^ | 05/12/2020 | Mike Hennessy
    Enter comet Swan, speeding past Earth before it laps our sun and takes another long, elliptical trip through the outer solar system. Swan last waved at Earth 25 million years ago, when mammals grazed on sprawling grasslands in the Oligocene Epoch. Now, this sun-tinged cosmic snowball may illuminate our early morning sky this month. Swan was discovered by Michael Mattiazzo, an Australian amateur astronomer who analyzed images from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory spacecraft that observes our sun. Swan is outgassing hydrogen from water-ice on its toasty approach to the sun. This hydrogen “burp” shows up in ultraviolet images from...
  • The Ion Tail of New Comet SWAN

    05/02/2020 9:09:02 AM PDT · by MtnClimber · 17 replies
    NASA.gov ^ | 29 Apr, 2020 | Gerald Rhemann (image)
    Newly discovered Comet SWAN has already developed an impressive tail. The comet came in from the outer Solar System and has just passed inside the orbit of the Earth. Officially designated C/2020 F8 (SWAN), this outgassing interplanetary iceberg will pass its closest to the Earth on May 13, and closest to the Sun on May 27. The comet was first noticed in late March by an astronomy enthusiast looking through images taken by ESA's and NASA's Sun-orbiting SOHO spacecraft, and is named for this spacecraft's Solar Wind Anisotropies (SWAN) camera. The featured image, taken from the dark skies in Namibia...
  • It Came From Outside Our Solar System and Now It’s Breaking Up

    04/08/2020 10:47:25 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 7 replies
    NYTimes ^ | 4/7/20 | Joshua Sokol
    It came from beyond our solar system. But the sun wasn’t content to let it leave in peace, or in one piece. Comet 2I/Borisov, an Eiffel Tower-sized clod of dust and ice, plunged into our solar system last fall, exhaling vapor as it buzzed nearest to our sun around Christmas. This alien visitor must have formed around a distant and unknown star. It slumbered as it crossed the frozen gulf of interstellar space. But now, suddenly, the sleeper is awake and kicking. To the simultaneous delight and frustration of the world’s astronomers, Borisov has sloughed off at least one fragment...
  • Brightening comet looks set to delight astronomers in May

    03/18/2020 4:10:11 PM PDT · by LibWhacker · 20 replies
    Skymania ^ | 3/16/20 | Paul Sutherland
    A comet is currently brightening faster than expected, giving hope that it will become a prominent object visible with the unaided eye in May. An image of Comet C/2019 ATLAS taken from Walmer, Kent, UK, on March 12th, 2020. Image credit: Paul Sutherland The celestial visitor is labelled C/2019 Y4 ATLAS, indicating that it was discovered in 2019 by a sky survey called the Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS). This robotic survey, based in Hawaii, searches for small objects to help defend Earth against possible future impacts, and has found several comets as well as asteroids. Comet C/2019 Y4...
  • Ancient human settlement was obliterated by a COMET that exploded in Earth's atmosphere and sent fragments of molten glass 'hot enough to melt cars' flying to the ground 12,800 years ago

    03/10/2020 10:32:32 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 83 replies
    DailyMail ^ | 10 March 2020 | Ian Randall
    The event destroyed a village found in the Abu Hureyra dig site in Syria... The impact is also believed to have contributed to the extinction of many large animals, including mammoths as well as North American horses and camels. Experts believe the explosion helped bring about the demise of the North American Clovis culture and usher in an episode of climatic cooling. The Abu Hureyra site is located on the edge of a vast region known as the Younger Dryas Boundary (YDB) strewnfield, which incorporates around 30 sites across Europe, the Americas and parts of the Middle East. The strewnfield...
  • Interstellar Comet Borisov Shines in Incredible New Hubble Photos

    12/15/2019 7:06:15 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 12 replies
    Space.com ^ | 12/14/2019 | Chelsea Gohd
    In the first of these new images, taken on Nov. 16, the comet was approximately 203 million miles from Earth, seen in front of a distant spiral galaxy known as 2MASX J10500165-0152029, according to a NASA statement. You can see the comet's tail of dust up to the right. You can also see that the object's bright core looks smudged, as Hubble was imaging the object while also tracking its movement. In both images, 2I/Borisov has been artificially colored blue so that details can be seen in the coma, or envelope of dust and material that surrounds the comet's core,...
  • Interstellar comet will pass close to Earth this weekend

    12/07/2019 7:46:46 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 23 replies
    CNN ^ | December 6, 2019 | Ashley Strickland,
    Astronomers have captured the best and closest image to date of interstellar comet 2I/Borisov, a visitor that originated from outside of our solar system and is currently passing through. On Sunday, the comet will pass within 190 million miles of Earth on its closest approach before continuing on through our solar system. As it gets closer to Earth, the icy comet is shedding more gas and dust through its tail through evaporation. Astronomers at Yale University used the W.M. Keck Observatory's Low-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer, located in Hawaii, to provide the closest look at the interstellar comet since it was first...
  • How to see this week's intense 'unicorn' meteor storm

    11/22/2019 10:56:31 AM PST · by Red Badger · 28 replies
    www.nationalgeographic.com ^ | PUBLISHED November 21, 2019 | By Andrew Fazekas
    Astronomers expect that this year’s Alpha Monocerotid meteor shower will be an epic outburst with possible rates of up to 400 shooting stars an hour. ================================================================= Sky-watchers may get to see 2019 really go out with a bang, with the expected arrival this week of an explosion of shooting stars. If astronomers’ predictions hold true, the Alpha Monocerotid meteor shower could come to life in dramatic fashion on November 21 and 22, with possible rates of up to 400 shooting stars an hour during its relatively brief peak. Such an outburst would make this shower at least four times more...
  • How two intruders from interstellar space are upending astronomy

    11/21/2019 7:35:30 PM PST · by MtnClimber · 35 replies
    Nature ^ | 20 Nov, 2019 | Alexandra Witze
    From the tallest peak in Hawaii to a high plateau in the Andes, some of the biggest telescopes on Earth will point towards a faint smudge of light over the next few weeks. The same patch of sky will draw the attention of Gennady Borisov, an amateur astronomer in Crimea, and many other hobbyists who will sacrifice proper sleep and doze through their day jobs rather than miss this golden opportunity. What they’re looking for is a rare visitor that is about to make its closest approach to the Sun. After that, they have just months to grab as much...
  • Here’s the Picture We’ve Been Waiting for. Hubble’s Photo of Interstellar Comet 2I/Borisov

    10/17/2019 10:32:15 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 24 replies
    Hubble Space Telescope. The workhorse telescope has given us a photo of the new interstellar comet 2I/Borisov... 2I/Borisov has wandered into our Solar System from the deep cold of interstellar space, but nobody knows from whence it came, or how long it’s been travelling. Boris only the second object we’ve observed that’s come into our Solar System from somewhere else in the galaxy, and the Hubble snapped photos of it speeding along at about 177,000 kph (110,000 mph.) So far, the Hubble images are the sharpest ones yet. Comets contain a lot of water ice and other volatiles. When they...
  • Hubble telescope captures the best photo yet of the interstellar comet Borisov [tr]

    10/17/2019 6:47:34 AM PDT · by C19fan · 17 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | October 17, 2019 | Ian Randall
    An Astronomer has released our best and sharpest look to date at Comet Borisov, the second ever-known interstellar object to visit our solar system, using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to capture the new image. The comet was travelling at around 110,000 miles per hour when University of California Los Angeles astronomer David Jewitt studied it on October 12, 2019, when it was 260 million miles away. The comet — which is named after the Crimean astronomer who discovered it — will pass within around 177,000 miles (285,000 kilometres) of the Earth in early December this year. It is trailing behind...
  • Astronomers find cyanide gas in interstellar object 2I/Borisov

    10/08/2019 8:22:09 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 21 replies
    phys.org ^ | 10/07/2019 | Mat Williams
    C/2019 Q4 (Borisov) this summer provided renewed opportunities to study material left by outgassing. Using data gathered by the William Herschel Telescope (WHT), an international team of astronomers found that 2I/Borisov contains cyanide. Since comets and asteroids are essentially material left over from the formation of a planetary system, these studies will allow scientists to place constraints on the physical and chemical processes involved in the formation of extrasolar planets. Basically, it's like being able to study extrasolar planets without having to go there physically. Prof. Fitzsimmons told Universe Today, materials from other planetary systems, delivered to our doorstep—or at...
  • INCOMING Mystery object approaching us from interstellar space could be ALIEN spacecraft...

    09/19/2019 10:07:15 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 123 replies
    The Sun UK ^ | 19 Sep 2019, 16:57Updated: 19 Sep 2019, 17:11 | Harry Pettit, Senior Digital Technology and Science Reporter
    A MYSTERIOUS object hurtling towards our Solar System may be an alien spacecraft. That's the shock claim made by one space scientist, who has exclusively revealed to The Sun that our incoming visitor could be piloted by hyper-intelligent beings. Last week, scientists in Germany announced they had spotted a distant object heading in our direction. Dubbed "C/2019 Q4", the high-speed body appears to be on a path originating from another star system that will see it fire past Mars in October. Despite numerous attempts to study C/2019, scientists remain clueless as to what it is. Many speculate the distant mass...
  • An interstellar comet looks to be heading our way

    09/11/2019 5:58:09 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 91 replies
    cnet ^ | September 11, 2019 | Eric Mack
    A comet first spotted by a Ukrainian amateur astronomer looks to be just the second known object to visit our cosmic neighborhood from beyond the solar system. What could be an even bigger deal is that this one was discovered as it's still approaching us. The comet was found by Gennady Borisov of Crimea on Aug. 30, and went by the temporary name GB00234 until very recently. After being watched by several other observatories over the past few weeks, it was given the official name of C/2019 Q4 (Borisov) by the Minor Planet Center on Wednesday. It appeared to follow...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Big Dipper, Deep Sky

    01/22/2016 10:26:00 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | January 23, 2016 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: The Big Dipper is an easy to recognize, well-known asterism in northern skies, though many see the Plough or Wagon. Famous bright nebulae of the north can also be found along its familiar lines, highlighted in this carefully composed scene with telescopic insets framed in the wider-field skyview. All from Messier's catalog, M101 and M51 are cosmic pinwheel and whirlpool on the left, spiral galaxies far beyond the Milky Way. To the right, M108, a distant edge-on spiral galaxy is seen close to our galaxy's own owl-faced planetary nebula M97. Taken on January 16, the wider-field view seems to...
  • Surprising Recent Discoveries of Three Large Near-Earth Objects

    02/17/2014 7:24:07 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 18 replies
    NASA/JPL Near-Earth Object Program Office ^ | November 5, 2013 | Don Yeomans and Paul Chodas
    The first of the new large near-Earth asteroid discoveries is named 2013 UQ4, and it is perhaps the most unusual. This approximately 19-kilometer (12-mile) wide object was spotted by the Catalina Sky Survey on Oct. 23 when the asteroid was 435 million kilometers (270 million miles) away from Earth. Not only is this object unusually large, it follows a very unusual highly inclined, retrograde orbit about the Sun, which means it travels around the Sun in the opposite direction of all the planets and the vast majority of asteroids. The only objects usually found in retrograde orbits are comets, which...
  • See a passing comet this Sunday

    12/15/2018 9:47:16 AM PST · by ETL · 26 replies
    Phys.org ^ | Dec 14, 2018 | NASA
    On Sunday, Dec. 16, the comet known as 46P/Wirtanen will make one of the 10 closest comet flybys of Earth in 70 years, and you may even be able to see it without a telescope. Although the approach will be a distant 7.1 million miles (11.4 million kilometers, or 30 lunar distances) from Earth, it's still a fairly rare opportunity. "This will be the closest comet Wirtanen has come to Earth for centuries and the closest it will come to Earth for centuries," said Paul Chodas, manager of the Center for Near-Earth Object Studies at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in...
  • Brightest comet of 2018 to pass the closest to Earth in Decembe

    12/09/2018 2:54:09 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 24 replies
    nbc ^ | Dec. 9, 2018 / 12:07 PM ‎PST | Angel Torres
    The comet 46P/Wirtanen, which passes Earth every 5.4 years, was one of three comets discovered by Carl Wirtanen in 1948 at the Lick Observatory in California. This orbit will be one of the closest comet orbits to Earth since the 1950s, according to Space.com. The comet 46P will likely not have a large observable tail because of its relatively small size, according to Space.com. It measures 0.68 miles in diameter, one-tenth the size of the popular Halley's Comet. Currently, 46P is a small blueish object in the night sky. The comet will be passing in the Southern sky, near the...
  • Venus wave may be Solar System's biggest

    01/16/2017 1:44:34 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 5 replies
    bbc.com ^ | 16 January 2017 | Paul Rincon
    The...wave is thought to form as the lower atmosphere flows over mountains on Venus' surface. ... Just after entering orbit around Venus in 2015, the Akatsuki orbiter observed a bow-shaped feature in the upper atmosphere over several days. Curiously, the bright structure - which stretched for 10,000km - remained stationary at the altitude of Venus' cloud tops. This is difficult to reconcile with what we know about Venus' thick upper atmosphere, in which clouds streak by at 100 metres per second (m/s). The clouds travel much faster than the slowly rotating planet below, where a Venusian day lasts longer than...