National Aeronautics and Space Administration Logo
Follow this link to skip to the main content
YSS Logo
YSS Logo
YSS Logo
NASA Banner
Return to Solar System Exploration
TOPICS
  Educational Resources Background Featured Missions Solar System Explorers
   Overview   News   Classrooms   Organizations & Clubs 

Comets: Small Bodies / Big Impacts
News


Previous
Previous
    1     2    
Next
    Show All
Date
Title
15 Oct 2014 Rosetta's Comet Landing Site Close Up
A mosaic from the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft shows "Site J," the primary landing site on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko for the mission's Philae lander. Rosetta is the first mission to attempt a soft landing on a comet.
9 Oct 2014 NASA Prepares its Science Fleet for Oct. 19 Mars Comet Encounter
NASA's extensive fleet of science assets, particularly those orbiting and roving Mars, have front row seats to image and study a once-in-a-lifetime comet flyby on Sunday, Oct. 19. Comet C/2013 A1, also known as comet Siding Spring, will pass within about 87,000 miles (139,500 kilometers) of the Red Planet -- less than half the distance between Earth and our moon and less than one-tenth the distance of any known comet flyby of Earth.
15 Sep 2014 'J' Marks the Spot for Rosetta's Lander
The European Space Agency's Rosetta's lander, Philae, will target Site J, an intriguing region on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko that offers unique scientific potential, with hints of activity nearby, and minimum risk to the lander compared to the other candidate sites. The 220-pound (100-kilogram) lander is scheduled to reach the surface on November 11, where it will perform in-depth measurements to characterize the nucleus. Rosetta is an international mission spearheaded by the European Space Agency with support and instruments provided by NASA.
6 Aug 2014 Rosetta Arrives at Target Comet
After a decade-long journey chasing its target, the European Space Agency's Rosetta, carrying three NASA instruments, became the first spacecraft to rendezvous with a comet. The last of a series of 10 rendezvous maneuvers that began in May, to adjust Rosetta's speed and trajectory to gradually match those of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, occurred today (Aug. 6, 2014).
24 Jul 2014 NASA's Mars Spacecraft Maneuvers to Prepare for Close Comet Flyby
NASA is taking steps to protect its Mars orbiters, while preserving opportunities to gather valuable scientific data, as comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring heads toward a close flyby of Mars on Oct. 19. The comet's nucleus will miss Mars by about 82,000 miles (132,000 kilometers), shedding material hurtling at about 35 miles (56 kilometers) per second, relative to Mars and Mars-orbiting spacecraft. At that velocity, even the smallest particle -- estimated to be about one-fiftieth of an inch (half a millimeter) across -- could cause significant damage to a spacecraft.
24 Jul 2014 Surface Impressions of Rosetta's Comet
Surface structures are becoming visible in new images of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko taken by the scientific imaging system OSIRIS onboard the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft. The resolution of these images is now 330 feet (100 meters) per pixel. One of the most striking features is currently found in the comet's neck region. This part of 67P seems to be brighter than the rest of the nucleus.
23 Jul 2014 NEOWISE Spots a Comet That Looked Like an Asteroid
Comet C/2013 UQ4 (Catalina) has been observed by NASA's Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) spacecraft just one day after passing through its closest approach to the sun. The comet glows brightly in infrared wavelengths, with a dust tail streaking more than 62,000 miles (100,000 kilometers) across the sky. Its spectacular activity is driven by the vaporization of ice that has been preserved from the time of planet formation 4.5 billion years ago.
17 Jul 2014 Rosetta Spacecraft Approaching Twofold Comet
As the European Space Agency's spacecraft Rosetta is slowly approaching its destination, comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the comet is again proving to be full of surprises. New images obtained by OSIRIS, the onboard scientific imaging system, confirm the body's peculiar shape hinted at in earlier pictures. Comet 67P is obviously different from other comets visited so far. The comet's nucleus consists of two distinctly separated parts.
15 May 2014 Rosetta's Target Comet Becoming Active
The target of ESA's Rosetta mission has started to reveal its true personality as a comet, its dusty veil clearly developing over the last six weeks.
6 May 2014 A New Meteor Shower in May?
There could be a new meteor shower this year: the May Camelopardalids, caused by dust from periodic comet 209P/LINEAR. No one has ever seen it before, but this year the Camelopardalids could put on a display that rivals the well-known Perseids of August. The best time to look is during the hours between 6:00 and 08:00 Universal Time on May 24th or between 2 and 4 o'clock in the morning Eastern Daylight Time.
27 Mar 2014 Rosetta Sets Sights on Destination Comet
The Rosetta spacecraft has caught a first glimpse of its destination comet since waking up from deep-space hibernation on Jan. 20. The first images of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko were taken on March 20 and 21 by the Optical, Spectroscopic and Infrared Remote Imaging System (OSIRIS) wide-angle camera and narrow-angle camera. Rosetta is an international mission spearheaded by the European Space Agency with support and instruments provided by NASA.
27 Mar 2014 NASA's Hubble Space Telescope Spots Mars-Bound Comet Sprout Multiple Jets
NASA released Thursday an image of a comet that, on Oct. 19, will pass within 84,000 miles of Mars -- less than half the distance between Earth and our moon. The image on the left, captured March 11 by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, shows comet C/2013 A1, also called Siding Spring, at a distance of 353 million miles from Earth. Hubble can't see Siding Spring's icy nucleus because of its diminutive size. The nucleus is surrounded by a glowing dust cloud, or coma, that measures roughly 12,000 miles across.
28 Jan 2014 NASA Preparing for 2014 Comet Watch at Mars
This spring, NASA will be paying cautious attention to a comet that could put on a barnstorming show at Mars on Oct. 19, 2014. On that date, comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring will buzz Mars about 10 times closer than any identified comet has ever flown past Earth. Spacecraft at Mars might get a good look at the nucleus of comet Siding Spring as it heads toward the closest approach, roughly 86,000 miles (138,000 kilometers) from the planet, give or take a few percent. On the other hand, dust particles that the comet nucleus sheds this spring could threaten orbiting spacecraft at Mars in October.
14 Nov 2013 MESSENGER Detects Comets ISON and Encke, Prepares for Closer Encounters
NASA's Mercury-orbiting MESSENGER spacecraft has captured images of two comets -- 2P/Encke and C/2012 S1 (ISON) -- setting the stage for observations later this month when both comets will be substantially brighter and much closer to Mercury and the Sun.
26 Jul 2013 Perseid Fireballs
In astronomy, there's nothing quite like a bright meteor streaking across the glittering canopy of a moonless night sky. The unexpected flash of light adds a dash of magic to an ordinary walk under the stars. New research by NASA has just identified the most magical nights of all. "We have found that one meteor shower produces more fireballs than any other," explains Bill Cooke of NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office. "It's the Perseid meteor shower, which peaks on August 12th and 13th."
25 Jul 2013 NASA's WISE Finds Mysterious Centaurs May Be Comets
The true identity of centaurs, the small celestial bodies orbiting the sun between Jupiter and Neptune, is one of the enduring mysteries of astrophysics. Are they asteroids or comets? A new study of observations from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) finds most centaurs are comets.
18 Jul 2013 Comet ISON Infographic
NASA has put together a colorful infographic that highlights ISON's journey from discovery to its perilous encounter with the sun in November. It also offers a snapshot of the 16 spacecraft (and a rocket and a balloon) that are tracking it.
16 Jul 2013 A Timeline Of Comet ISON's Dangerous Journey
A comet's journey through the solar system is perilous and violent. A giant ejection of solar material from the sun could rip its tail off. Before it reaches Mars -- at some 230 million miles away from the sun -- the radiation of the sun begins to boil its water, the first step toward breaking apart. And, if it survives all this, the intense radiation and pressure as it flies near the surface of the sun could destroy it altogether. Right now, Comet ISON is making that journey.
2 Jul 2013 Comet ISON Brings Holiday Fireworks
This July Fourth the solar system is showing off some fireworks of its own. Superficially resembling a skyrocket, comet ISON is hurtling toward the sun presently at a whopping 48,000 mph. Unlike a firework, the comet is not combusting, but in fact is pretty cold. Its skyrocket-looking tail is really a streamer of gas and dust bleeding off the icy nucleus, which is surrounded by a bright star-like-looking coma. The pressure of the solar wind sweeps the material into a tail, like a breeze blowing a windsock.
1 May 2013 Dusty Plasma Effects in Comets: Expectations for Rosetta
The changing dusty plasma environments of comets can be used as natural space laboratories for the study of dust-plasma interactions, and their physical and dynamical consequences. The forthcoming Rosetta-Philae rendezvous and lander mission will provide a unique opportunity to revisit the entire range of earlier observations of dusty plasma phenomena in a single comet, as it moves around the sun. Rosetta will rendezvous with comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in May 2014, at about 4 AU from the sun, deploy its Philae surface lander in November 2014, and escort the comet around the sun until at least December 2015.
Previous
Previous
    1     2    
Next
    Show All

All Topics
Back to YSS Home
Featured YSS Resource: From the Earth to the Solar System Featured YSS Resource: Eyes on the Solar System - Explore our galactic neighborhood in 3D! Featured YSS Resource: Night Sky Network Go StarGaze iPhone App - FREE!
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: 12 Sep 2014