Comet News

Comets are small celestial bodies that orbit the Sun, primarily composed of frozen gases, dust, and rocky material. They are often described as “dirty snowballs” or “icy dirtballs,” depending on their predominant composition. As a comet approaches the Sun, the heat causes its icy components to sublimate (turn directly from solid to gas), creating a glowing coma (the nebulous envelope around the nucleus) and often a tail that extends away from the Sun. These tails are made visible by sunlight reflecting off the comet’s dust and by the solar wind interacting with the gas. Comets are known for their spectacular appearances and unpredictable behavior, and they have been observed and recorded by humans for thousands of years. They are of great scientific interest because they are believed to be pristine remnants from the formation of the solar system, potentially holding clues about the early solar system’s conditions and the origin of organic molecules on Earth.

Infographic: Anatomy of a Comet

Comets are cosmic snowballs, the frozen leftovers from the formation of the solar system composed of frozen gases, dust, and rock. They range in size…