Comet as seen by SOHO.
Click on image for full size
Image courtesy NASA
SOHO watches comet
News story originally written on January 31, 2003
On January 29, 2003 a comet passed very close to the Sun.
This picture was taken by a spacecraft called SOHO.
When the SOHO spacecraft took this picture, we couldn’t see the comet
from Earth because the comet was too close to the Sun.
SOHO has a special instrument called a coronagraph which blocks the brightest light from the Sun.
A coronagraph is a lot like an eclipse
in the way it blocks the Sun's light.
Comet Kudo-Fujikawa passed very close to the Sun. For a while it was closer than
Mercury, the closest planet to the Sun.
Some pictures from SOHO were put together to make a movie
(820K GIF) of the comet passing the Sun. Here is an even better movie (3.7M GIF). These movies are VERY BIG, and may take a
long time to download to your computer!
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