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Comet and Ocean Planet

By: Alex Cherney

 

Region: Australia and Pacific

Site: Victoria - Australia

Spot: Cape Schanck

Date: 2011 December 24

As seen on the National Geographic News the stunning tail of Comet Lovejoy (C/2011 W3) is photographed in the morning sky above Cape Schanck, about 90 km from Melbourne, southeastern Australia. The 200-meter icy body not only survived its close perihelion (only 185,000 km from the Sun's surface), but in the days afterward this sungrazer comet also held together and reformed its dust and gas tails. Note the fading Milky Way in twilight and star cluster NGC6231 in Scorpius which is visible above the comet head. Alex Cherney, Terrastro.com

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