Will Comet ISON survive tomorrow’s brush with the Sun? UPDATE to the UPDATE!

From Astronomy Pic of the Day, which I check every day.  Click for a visit.

Will Comet ISON survive tomorrow’s close encounter with the Sun? Approaching to within a solar diameter of the Sun’s surface, the fate of one of the most unusual comets of modern times will finally be determined. The comet could shed a great amount of ice and dust into a developing tail — or break apart completely. Unfortunately, the closer Comet ISON gets to the Sun, the harder it has been for conventional telescopes to see the brightening comet in the glare of the morning Sun. Pictured in the above short time lapse video,Comet ISON was captured rising over the Canary Islands just above the morning Sun a few days ago. If the comet’s nucleus survives, the coma and the tails it sheds might well be visible rising ahead of the Sun in the next few days or weeks. Alternatively, satellites watching the Sun might document one of the larger comet disintegrations yet recorded. Stay tuned!

More at SpaceWeather!


From Spaceweather:

COMET ISON, R.I.P.: Evidence is mounting that comet ISON did not survive its brush with the sun earlier today. At 01:45 EST on Nov. 28th, Thanksgiving Day in the USA, the comet was supposed to pass a little more than a million miles above the surface of the sun. As a new movie from SOHO shows, the comet had already disintegrated. Click to set the scene in motion, and pay careful attention to the head of the comet:


Again from Spaceweather:

CANCEL THE EULOGYComet ISON flew through the sun’s atmosphere on Nov. 28th and the encounter did not go well for the icy comet. Just before perihelion (closest approach to the sun) the comet rapidly faded and appeared to disintegrate. This prompted reports of ISON’s demise. However, a fraction of the comet has survived. Click on the image below to see what emerged from Comet ISON’s brush with solar fire:

In the movie, Comet ISON seems to be falling apart as it approaches the sun. Indeed, researchers working with NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory said they saw nothing along the track that ISON was expected to follow through the sun’s atmosphere. Nevertheless, something has emerged. Whether this is a small scorched fragment of Comet ISON’s nucleus or perhaps a “headless comet”–a stream of debris marking the remains of the comet’s disintegrated core–remains to be seen.


There is more over there.

As a commentator posted in the com box…

ISON is truly

“The Little Comet That Could”!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Supertradmum says:

    Apparently, a 50% chance of survival. We shall know soon. Thanks for the reminder…

  2. RidersOnTheStorm says:

    ‘FIRE vs. ISON’
    NASA will hold a live Google+ hangout on Thanksgiving Thursday (Nov. 28) to webcast the solar passage of Comet ISON as it whips around the sun. The webcast will begin at 1 p.m. EST (1800 GMT) and last until 3:30 p.m. EST (2030 GMT). You will be able to watch the webcast live in the link below at the start time.


    From NASA: “Watch and ask questions as NASA solar physicists track the comet live from the mission control for NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) spacecraft during ISON’s closest approach to the sun. The Hangout will be broadcast publicly on NASA Goddard Space Flight Center’s YouTube and Google+ pages. The Hangout also will be carried live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.”

    From rural areas, where night skies are still reasonably dark, the comet could evolve into a celestial showpiece — perhaps even a showstopper. I feel the comet in all its glory will be a spectacular sight through December, especially Christmas Night-St. Stephen’s Day when it will be at its closest to Earth.

  3. StJude says:

    Father have you read all the ‘Its the return of Jesus’ theories? I have an overnight bag packed.. just in case. ; )

  4. Robert of Rome says:

    The Little Comet That Could

  5. Charles E Flynn says:

    From http://www.sknvibes.com/news/newsdetails.cfm/82147 :

    It was estimated that ISON would undergo temperatures of 4,900 degrees Fahrenheit (2,700 Celsius) and lose three million tonnes of its mass per second as it made its journey around the sun.

  6. RidersOnTheStorm says:

    Well Comet ISON still continues to surprise as at least part of it did survive and pass around the sun.


  7. JohnnyZoom says:

    Comet Lazarus

  8. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    Zig-zagging interpretation continues… I just read that in photos taken Friday and Saturday, what survived looks diffuse, suggesting no core remaining…

Comments are closed.