National Aeronautics and Space Administration Logo
Follow this link to skip to the main content NASA Banner
Solar System Exploration
Multimedia
Comet Borrelly Composite
Comet Borrelly Composite (click to enlarge)
 
 

Comet Borrelly Composite
Date: 22 Sep 2001

A composite of images from NASA's Deep Space 1 spacecraft shows features of comet Borrelly's nucleus, dust jets escaping the nucleus and the cloud-like "coma" of dust and gases surrounding the nucleus. False color is used to reveal details of the jets and coma.

The images were taken when Deep Space 1 was about 4,800 kilometers (3,000 miles) from Borrelly during a Sept. 22, 2001, flyby. Borrelly's nucleus is about 8 kilometers (5 miles) from end to end, so the field of view is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) across.

The Sun shines from the bottom of the image. The main dust jet, seen extending toward the bottom left, heads away from the comet in a direction that is about 30 degrees off the direction straight toward the Sun from the comet.

The colors show about three orders of magnitude in the brightness of the dust jets and coma. Red indicates about one-tenth the brightness as the brightness of the nucleus, blue one-one-hundredth, purple one-one-thousandth. The red bumps near the nucleus indicate where the jet resolves into three distinct, narrow jets, which likely come from discrete source points on the surface.

Credit: NASA



Awards and Recognition   Solar System Exploration Roadmap   Contact Us   Site Map   Print This Page
NASA Official: Kristen Erickson
Advisory: Dr. James Green, Director of Planetary Science
Outreach Manager: Alice Wessen
Curator/Editor: Phil Davis
Science Writer: Autumn Burdick
Producer: Greg Baerg
Webmaster: David Martin
> NASA Science Mission Directorate
> Budgets, Strategic Plans and Accountability Reports
> Equal Employment Opportunity Data
   Posted Pursuant to the No Fear Act
> Information-Dissemination Policies and Inventories
> Freedom of Information Act
> Privacy Policy & Important Notices
> Inspector General Hotline
> Office of the Inspector General
> NASA Communications Policy
> USA.gov
> ExpectMore.gov
> NASA Advisory Council
> Open Government at NASA
Last Updated: 17 Apr 2014