Video: So long, Comet ISON

The video below shows Comet ISON’s complete perihelion passage, its total sweep closest to the sun on November 28, 2013. Perihelion was exciting, but the close pass near the sun took its toll on Comet ISON. At a meeting of astronomers earlier this month, NASA Goddard’s Karl Battams joked:

We see the comet going in, and the object formerly known as ISON emerging from the other side.


NASA astronomers do now confirm that ISON is no longer a comet. The comet is now thought to be a traveling field of debris. The Hubble Space Telescope is scheduled to try to capture an image of the former Comet ISON on December 19.

Plus, according to Battams’ Twitter feed, @Sungrazer Comets, there are two bright Oort Cloud comets to look forward to in 2014: C/2012 K1 (LINEAR) and C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring). We are still due for that Comet of the Century, after all!

Click here to read blog notes from the December 6 meeting of professional astronomers, talking about ISON.

Click here for more about the Hubble Space Telescope’s ISON observations, planned for late December.

December 16, 2013

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