Detail View: NASA Hubble Space Telescope Collection: Hubble Provides Spectacular Detail of a Comet's Breakup

Hubble Provides Spectacular Detail of a Comet's Breakup
*Credit:* NASA [ ], ESA [ ] and G. Bacon (STScI [ ]) Selected still images from this video: (click to enlarge): [ ] [ ] [ ]
Fast Facts: 
Technical facts about this news release: About the Object Object Name: Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 Object Description: Comet Distance from the Sun on April 18, 2006: 1.17 Astronomical Units (AU) or 108 million miles (173 million kilometers) Distance from the Earth on April 18, 2006: 0.22 Astronomical Units (AU) or 20 million miles (32 million kilometers) About the Data Data Description: These HST data are from proposal 10992: H.A. Weaver (JHU/APL), P.Lamy (Laboratoire d'Astronomie Spatiale, Marseille, France) , C. Lisse (University of Maryland), W. Reach (Caltech), and I.Toth (Hungarian Academy of Sciences). Instrument: ACS/WFC Exposure Date(s): April 18 - 20, 2006 Exposure Time: 2.3 hours Filters: F606W ("V") About the Image Image Credit: NASA, ESA, H. Weaver (JHU/APL), M. Mutchler and Z. Levay (STScI) Release Date: April 27, 2006 Orientation: Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 - Fragment B - HST: Apr. 18, 2006 [ ]
*Description*:> Annotated sequence of three Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys images of the disintegration of Comet 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3's fragment B. This fragment continues to break into smaller chunks, which are pushed down its tail. The smaller chunks have the lowest mass and so are accelerated away from the parent nucleus faster than the larger chunks. Some chunks seem to dissipate completely over the course of several days.
Advanced Camera for Surveys
April 18, 2006
Running Time: 
3 seconds
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Release Date: 
April 27, 2006 01:00 PM (EDT)