Related topics: nasa · spacecraft · solar system · earth · asteroid

Did comet impacts jump-start life on Earth?

Comets screaming through the atmosphere of early Earth at tens of thousands of miles per hour likely contained measurable amounts of protein-forming amino acids. Upon impact, these amino acids self-assembled into significantly ...

Space physicists send instrument to target comets

Space physicists at Umeå University, Sweden, develop measuring instruments for the spaceship Comet Interceptor. The vessel has been selected to be part of the European Space Agency's ESA program to target comets that have ...

ESA's new mission to intercept a comet

"Comet Interceptor" has been selected as ESA's new fast-class mission in its Cosmic Vision Programme. Comprising three spacecraft, it will be the first to visit a truly pristine comet or other interstellar object that is ...

Three exocomets discovered around the star Beta Pictoris

Just about a year after the launch of the NASA mission TESS, the first three comets orbiting the nearby star Beta Pictoris outside our solar system were discovered with data from the space telescope. The main goal of TESS ...

Image: New comet viewer

From a distance of five million kilometres to within 20 metres, ESA's Rosetta spacecraft captured images of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from all angles.

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Comet

A comet is a Small Solar System Body that orbits the Sun. When close enough to the Sun, a comet exhibits a visible coma (fuzzy "atmosphere"), and sometimes a tail, both because of the effects of solar radiation upon the comet's nucleus. Comet nuclei are themselves loose collections of ice, dust and small rocky particles, ranging from a few kilometers to tens of kilometers across.

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