Comet falls into sun
December 15, 2011 3:47 PM   Subscribe

Today, a comet falls into the sun. Via
posted by hot_monster (27 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
SET THE CONTROLS etc... etc...
posted by Artw at 3:48 PM on December 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


So if you wake up one morning and it's a particularly beautiful day, you'll know we made it. Okay, I'm signing out.
posted by 2bucksplus at 3:50 PM on December 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


Eponysterical
posted by anigbrowl at 3:53 PM on December 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Today, a comet falls into the sun.

Well, more like "grazes the sun & evaporates"
posted by mediareport at 3:55 PM on December 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's not a comet, that's a Disaster Area concert.
posted by vidur at 3:57 PM on December 15, 2011 [9 favorites]


This describes a crush I had in Grade 10 almost perfectly.
posted by jimmythefish at 4:07 PM on December 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


Note that you can actually watch a near realtime feed from NASA's SDO.
posted by Ironmouth at 4:07 PM on December 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


How does that feed work? It seems to repeat the same 25 frames again and again - does it load new frames eventually?
posted by ymgve at 4:10 PM on December 15, 2011


Refreshed, and it's up to 58 frames now. You can actually see the comet closing in on the sun now!
posted by ymgve at 4:23 PM on December 15, 2011


I see it! Open Ironmouth's link, then choose the 1024x1024 feed from the top wavelength over on the right (it's yellowish). Once that's loaded up, go to about frame 49 and start stepping through slowly.

There's a big solar prominence at about 9 o'clock on the Sun's disc - the comet fades into view just below that, and passes through it upwards and to the right, disappearing behind the sun by frame 70-odd. It's blink-and-you-'ll-miss-it stuff, but pretty cool nonetheless!
posted by ZsigE at 4:38 PM on December 15, 2011


It almost seems like it just...evaporated. Should it do that?
posted by ymgve at 4:49 PM on December 15, 2011


And in a few short weeks the sun will start dividing, and a new star-child will form.
posted by blue_beetle at 4:58 PM on December 15, 2011 [7 favorites]


Well, more like "grazes the sun & evaporates"

Oh, it only GRAZES the sun? Well shit, that barely counts at all. I graze the sun, like, five times before breakfast.
posted by FatherDagon at 5:15 PM on December 15, 2011


Like a great big space cow.
posted by TwelveTwo at 5:18 PM on December 15, 2011


And the sun just got a little cooler.......
posted by dibblda at 5:19 PM on December 15, 2011


So that's what became of the dog from Full House.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:20 PM on December 15, 2011


That is badass. I don't know which metal song that should be the video for...but there is one.
posted by biscotti at 5:21 PM on December 15, 2011


it seems the comet has survived ! from a tweet 10 mins ago. oh love joy
posted by elpapacito at 5:28 PM on December 15, 2011


Where's the kaboom? There was supposed to be a sun-shattering kaboom!
posted by ymgve at 5:31 PM on December 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh!

You mean that wasn't just a metaphor for Craig James?
posted by BlueHorse at 6:11 PM on December 15, 2011


when i woke up, my pillow was gone
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 7:13 PM on December 15, 2011


I am torn between 1) joy that Lovejoy has survived its sun-grazing (seriously, check the video of its reappearance on the other side of the sun for the awesomest underdog moment of this lunar cycle), 2) terror that our best scientists' predictions about objects flinging around our solar system are often inaccurate, and 3) joy again at learning there's actually a whole class of things called Kreutz Sungrazers:

The Kreutz Sungrazers are a family of sungrazing comets, characterized by orbits taking them extremely close to the Sun at perihelion. They are believed to be fragments of one large comet that broke up several centuries ago and are named for German astronomer Heinrich Kreutz, who first demonstrated that they were related.

AwesomeAwesomeAwesomeAwesomeAwesome.

So, joy wins.
posted by mediareport at 8:00 PM on December 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


In other news, Icarus is suiting up to have another go.
posted by Twang at 11:42 PM on December 15, 2011


The spacecraft I work on, PROBA2, also managed to observe the comet. Here's our video. Best watched at 720p and full-screen.

People here are very excited about all the wiggles in the tail, which are revealing some kind of interaction -- turbulence? magnetic activity? we don't know yet -- that I don't think anybody has really observed before.

(The images have been highly enhanced to bring the comet, which is very dim, out of the bright solar corona, which is why they may look a little strange if you're used to "normal" SDO or SOHO images of the sun.)
posted by dseaton at 6:01 AM on December 16, 2011 [3 favorites]


Let me go on....
posted by stormpooper at 6:48 AM on December 16, 2011


Space Station Commander Captures Unprecedented View of Comet
posted by homunculus at 4:52 PM on December 22, 2011


People here are very excited about all the wiggles in the tail, which are revealing some kind of interaction -- turbulence? magnetic activity? we don't know yet

Flagellation, to get that final push for successful fertilization of the ovum.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:03 PM on December 22, 2011


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