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A messenger from the dawn of the universe, Halley's Comet orbits the sun once every 76 years. With each orbit, intense solar heat vaporizes ice and rock from the nucleus. The particles spread along the comet's orbit, releasing tiny meteoroids. Although Halley's Comet is deep in the outer solar system at the moment and won't return to Earth until 2061, it treats us to a meteor shower twice a year as our planet passes by the debris cloud. In May we have the eta Aquarids, and in October the Orionids.

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  • NASA ScienceCast: Meteors from Halley's Comet (FLV, 8.84 MB)
    Although Halley's Comet is deep in the outer solar system at the moment and won't return to Earth until 2061, it treats us to a meteor shower twice a year as our planet passes by the debris cloud.

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