This Dumbass Comet Just Flew Directly Into the Sun
On Thursday, NASA watched as a “sungrazer comet” sailed through space on a self-destructive collision course with the Sun.
Unfortunately, the poor fella didn’t survive its close encounter, CNET reports. Perhaps that’s not all that surprising for anything hurtling toward the Sun, but astronomers did get some fascinating footage as they watched the comet break apart in real-time.
Comet approaching the Sun (from southwest, or lower right), while slow CMEs were in progress on both the east and west limbs. The comet must have overlapped with the solar disk by now if it had survived. pic.twitter.com/DH1ftnycr7
NASA and the US Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) spotted the comet after it let out a bright flash of light on its approach. Sungrazer comets are fairly common, CNET reports, but it’s unusual for them to announce themselves with such dramatic flair. Unfortunately, this one’s journey is already over.
“This is not survivable for a little comet,” NASA and NRL researcher Karl Battams wrote in a tweet about the comet’s trajectory.