A New Comet is Approaching Earth

A new comet is approaching Earth.

It’s called N3 C2007 (Lulin) and approaches the Earth. In the second half of February will be close enough to be seen with the naked eye. And it’s the first time, astronomers say, in this part of the Solar System.Approximation of a comet is always an occasion of excitement among astronomers. Tail stars never ceases to fascinate: firstly because they are extremely old objects, remnants of a much younger universe. A sort of emissary from the past.

How close?

Astronomers estimate that on February 24, Lulin comet will be about 70 million km from Earth. And her tail will probably have a length of up to eight times the diameter of the moon. It is probably the first visit Lulin comet in the solar system – or at least, so say the orbit calculations which he worked in the past two years (since the discovery of the comet in 2007).

Where I come from comets?

Lulin Comet on January 2, 2009
Photo: NASA

Comets are objects of ice and dust orbiting the Sun in elliptical paths (some of them on some very elongated ellipses). Their source is, in principle, an ice cream at the side of the solar system called the Kuiper Belt. Or at least, some of them. For some of the known comets have very elongated orbits coming from the Kuiper Belt.

As a result, in the ’50s, Jan Oort proposed to imagine that the Solar System is surrounded by a zone of icy objects very old, a diffuse sphere of material meanwhile named “Oort cloud”. 

It’s about a huge area that we know very little. And anyone who has not seen before. A reason to concern ourselves comets.

Beyond information about the area in the coming Lulin comet itself is interesting. For example, do not know how it will behave in the vicinity of the Sun. Some comets approaching the sun, begin to melt, or, more precisely, their ice turns into vapor, and so is the famous line. But others behave differently, even for not having no tail. Or, instead, developing two twin tails.Lulin could be the last category?

We could probably meet soon for some of these questions.

Other news that you can find about sience and others cool things you can find them here. 

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3 Responses to “A New Comet is Approaching Earth”
  1. Lerinti Sorin Says...

    On March 19, 2011 at 6:19 am

    good post


  2. celeres Says...

    On March 19, 2011 at 6:28 am

    Tnx for sharing – Like !


  3. CHIPMUNK Says...

    On March 19, 2011 at 7:20 am

    Talented in your work


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