above picture taken last week, Comet Hale-Bopp's blue ion tail shows a dramatic extension, with current reports of about 20 degrees from dark locations. The comet's white dust tail has so far shown a more modest extent but appears to be growing significantly. Comet Hale-Bopp's closest approach to the Sun occurs in about two weeks, and although it will not get much closer to the Sun than does our Earth, Comet Hale-Bopp is likely to tell even more spectacular tails then.
NASA Web Site Statements, Warnings, and Disclaimers
NASA Official: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA / GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.
Based on Astronomy Picture Of the Day
Publications with keywords: Comet Hale-Bopp
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