Latest Lost comet Stories
On the night of April 23 to 24, ESO's Very Large Telescope observed fragment B of the comet Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 that had split a few days earlier, and discovered it had split again!
NASA's Deep Impact mission is about to smash into comet 9P/Tempel 1 to excavate a crater and probe the comet's internal structure. It's possible, however, that the comet will break into fragments, creating a cloud of meteoroids. That, say astronomers, may not be unnatural.
Hubble Space Telescope -- Astronomers analyzing debris from a comet that broke apart last summer spied pieces as small as smoke-sized particles and as large as football-field-sized fragments. But it's the material they didn't see that has aroused their curiosity.
Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 -- Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 is so-named because it was the ninth short-period comet discovered by Carolyn and Eugene Shoemaker and David Levy. It was first detected in a photograph taken on the night of March 24, 1993 with the 0.4-meter Schmidt telescope at the Mount Palomar observatory in California, and subsequently observed by many other astronomers. The comet was extremely unusual because it was in fragments, evidently due to a close encounter with the planet...
- A morbid dread of being buried alive. Also spelled 'taphiphobia'.