Interesting Facts About Comets
Interesting facts about comets will help you to study small objects of the solar system. You will discover many new and useful things, so many secrets store the relative silence of the universe, which is in constant movement and development.
1. Comets are cosmic bodies that exist within the solar system and orbits the Sun. Comets appeared along with the emergence of the solar system four and a half billion years ago.
2. The name has a Greek origin.
"Comet" is a Greek word, which means "long tail", since this body was originally associated with people whose hair was fluttering in a strong wind. The closest point of the orbit with respect to the Sun is Perihelion; the farthest point is the Aphelion.
3. Comets are a dirty snow.
Chemical composition: water, methandrostenolone, frozen ammonia, dust, rocks, space debris. The tail part appears at the maximum approach to the Sun. At a considerable distance, it looks like a dark object representing a clot of ice. The central part is represented by a stone core. It has a dark surface, its composition is not exactly known.
4. When approaching the Sun, the comets warm up and melt.
Melting ice when approaching the sunlight leads to the formation of a dust cloud, which creates a tail effect. When approaching the luminary, the body warms up, causing the sublimation process. When ice is close to the surface, it warms up and creates a jet, spewing like a geyser.
5. There are many comets.
The smallest of them has a core with a diameter of sixteen kilometers, the largest is forty. The size of the tail is enormous. Hyakutake has a tail of five hundred and eighty million kilometers. In the "Oort Cloud", which envelops the space, you can count several trillions of copies. In total there are about four thousand comets.
6. Jupiter can influence the movement of comets.
The largest planet is able to influence the direction of motion of these celestial bodies. The force of attraction of the planet is so great that Shoemaker-Levy 9 collapsed, striking the atmosphere of the planet.
7. Under the influence of gravity, the tailed comets take the form of spheres.
The asteroid is rather small to form a sphere, resembling the shape of a dumbbell. Asteroids accumulate in piles, having in the composition materials of various origins. The largest - Cicero in diameter is nine hundred and fifty kilometers. The asteroid that enters the planetary atmosphere is called a meteor, when it falls to the ground it is a meteorite.
8. A comet is a potential threat to Earthlings.
Our civilization can be destroyed by a meteor with a diameter of one kilometer. It is necessary to continue research to understand the nature of the tailed, constructing optimal methods of protection against them. Even in ancient times, these bodies were considered a sign that could bring a disaster.
9. Comet Halley periodically visits the solar system.
In 1910, near the Earth, Halley's Comet passed, which enters the solar system every 76 years. Some enterprising businessmen used this fact to increase the number of sales of gas masks, drugs for comets, umbrellas.
10. Comets usually have two tails.
The first, dusty, can be observed with the naked eye. The second tail consists of gases, stretching to three hundred and sixty miles. The ion tail is the result of exposure to the solar wind. The orbit of rotation in comets resembles an elliptical shape. When the body approaches the Sun, the ice component begins to warm up, causing evaporation. Gases, together with dust, are forming a cloud, called a coma, which moves behind the body. As it moves toward the luminary, dust with debris is blown off the body, forming a dusty tail.
11. The farther from the Sun, the more the comet is an ordinary stone lump.
The gas tail becomes visible under the influence of solar radiation. The body cools, leaving only an ice core.
12. Scientists suggest that comets have brought water to Earth.
Water on the globe could get from it, as well as many organic substances. They were the means of the birth of life.
13. Some scientists believe that sixty-five million years ago a large asteroid could touch the surface, resulting in the extinction of dinosaurs.
14. Comets are subject to the disappearance or escape from the solar system.
They leave the system limits or melt under multiple exposures of heat.
15. Only once in a decade can we observe a comet in the heavenly space.
The tail of a comet can be observed for several days or whole weeks. Very bright comets appear infrequently. But they certainly belong to the number of the most beautiful and impressive objects in the sky. Suffice it to mention, for example, the Large comet of 1861, C / 1995 O1 (Hale-Bopp), which was easy to observe even in cities in the spring of 1997, or C / 2006 P1 (McKnight), in January 2007 at twilight it demonstrated a huge fan-shaped tail.