Register to reply

Sun-diving comets!

by Astronuc
Tags: comets, sundiving
Share this thread:
Astronuc
#1
Jan21-12, 10:46 AM
Admin
Astronuc's Avatar
P: 21,869
Comet's Death Dive Into Sun Seen in Detail for 1st Time
http://www.space.com/14288-sungrazin...-observed.html
by Charles Q. Choi, SPACE.com Contributor
Date: 19 January 2012

A comet has been spotted disintegrating in the atmosphere of the sun for the first time.

Such sun-diving comets are common but none have been seen surviving entry into the sun's atmosphere until now. . . .
I was surprised to learn that sun-diving comets are common. I guess in the past, sun-diving comets simply disappeared, i.e., we knew they approached the sun, but did not reappear.

Now a single comet is an insignificant amount of mass compared to the sun, but I wonder how many comets the sun has collected over the eons, and how much of the carbon, oxygen in the sun has been contributed by comets.
Phys.Org News Partner Astronomy news on Phys.org
Witnessing the early growth of a giant
Orion rocks: Pebble-size particles may jump-start planet formation
Astronomers find evidence of water clouds in brown dwarf atmosphere
CosmicEye
#2
Jan23-12, 04:05 PM
P: 63
Cool. Maybe next time when they see a comets heading straight towards the sun, they can focus the cameras on the impact
Astronuc
#3
Jan23-12, 08:16 PM
Admin
Astronuc's Avatar
P: 21,869
Back in May 2011, another comet apparently got close to - or hit - the sun.

http://www.space.com/11663-comet-hit...explosion.html

These comets belong to the Kreutz family.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kreutz_Sungrazers

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...1213165028.htm

On the origin of the Kreutz family of sun-grazing comets (paper from 1967)
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1967BAICz..18..198S


Apparently many graze the sun, but some hit it. Ostensibly, this happens with other stars.

Astronuc
#4
Feb17-12, 02:40 PM
Admin
Astronuc's Avatar
P: 21,869
Sun-diving comets!

http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/video...a_id=124915541
Comet Lovejoy Dives Toward the Sun

NOTE: This video loops 3 times. An instrument on the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) adjusted its cameras in order to watch the trajectory of Comet Lovejoy. . . . . The movie from SDO was made the evening of Dec 15, 2011 and shows Comet Lovejoy moving in toward the sun.
Dotini
#5
Feb17-12, 06:39 PM
PF Gold
P: 515
Quote Quote by Astronuc View Post
Comet Lovejoy Dives Toward the Sun
The poor little thing, it lost its tail and wriggled excitedly as it plunged through the million K solar corona - but fearlessly, Lovejoy survived to grow a spectacular new tail on the other side of the sun. Whew!

What a spectacular show nature puts on for us when we have the instruments to observe it. I am grateful to NASA, and consider my tax well-spent in this case.

Respectfully submitted,
Steve


Register to reply

Related Discussions
How did comets acquire ice? Astronomy & Astrophysics 2
Next comets Astronomy & Astrophysics 12
Comets Velocity Introductory Physics Homework 7
Birght comets like Comet McNaught Astronomy & Astrophysics 12
Comets and orbital periods and such Introductory Physics Homework 1