Asteroids, Meteors, and Comets (Space!) by Josepha Sherman

By Josepha Sherman

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It had a double mission: to study Halley’s Comet and to measure the solar wind, the flow of particles from the sun. Suisei was able to send back several images of the comet. SHOEMAKER-LEVY 9 Though most comets merely pass by Earth, other planets have experienced comet impacts. On March 23, 1993, three American astronomers discovered a comet orbiting Jupiter. The comet had probably been orbiting the Sun before it was captured by Jupiter’s gravity. As the planet’s strong gravitation force pulled at it, the comet broke into several smaller pieces.

Halley’s Comet is probably the most famous comet. It has been noted in the sky over the course of nearly two thousand years. 35 35 asteroids, meteors, and comets A book from around 168 BCE includes a listing of comets and what their appearance meant. For example, Chi-Guan was a comet with a tail that looked like a spear. To the Chinese, this meant that war was coming or that a general would die. Pu-Hui, a comet with a triple tail, meant disease would soon strike. In ancient Greek folk belief, comets were evil signs of bad news.

Hartmann. The Grand Tour: A Traveler’s Guide to the Solar System. New York: Workman Publishing, 2005. NASA. htm NASA-NSSDC. sc =1985-073A National Geographic. html Peebles, Curtis. Asteroids: A History. : The Smithsonian Institution Press, 2000. Reynolds, Mike D. Falling Stars: A Guide to Meteors and Meteorites. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 2001. Yeomans, Donald K. Comets: A Chronological History of Observation, Science, Myth, and Folklore. New York: John Wiley and Sons, 1991. 62 Index Page numbers in boldface indicate photos or illustrations.

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