Comet Facts

Comet Facts
A comet is an icy space object that exists in our Solar System. Comets have a nucleus made up of dust, ice, various frozen gases and water. They orbit the Sun. Once comets pass close to the Sun they develop a dust atmosphere called a halo or coma as well as a tail of dust.
Interesting Comet Facts:
About 30% of a comet is made up of metals.
The orbital times for comets can range from several years to millions of years.
Most comets are too small and too far away to be detected from Earth.
Gas and water make up about 70% of a comet.
Comets orbit the Sun in an oval pattern.
Comets are made in the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud.
Usually comets remain in the outer edges of the Solar System until they bump into each other changing their direction.
Comets only have tails when they are melting.
Comets can be up to 40 kilometers across.
Haley's Comet, the most well-known comet, appears once every 76 years.
Comets that orbit less than 200 years are referred to as short term comets.
Haley's Comet is an example of a short term comet.
The next appearance of Haley's Comet is expected to occur sometime in the year 2061.
Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 is another known comet that collided with Jupiter in 1994.
Small comets are about 1 kilometer across.


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