Watch a Comet Plunge Toward the Sun at 2 Million KPH
Astronomers have observed a comet hurtling toward the sun at a staggering 2.1 million kilometers per hour.
The images were captured at the European Space Agency and NASA’s Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, also called SOHO.
The comet made its plunge to the sun Wednesday and Thursday, NASA said.
Comets are “chunks of ice and dust that orbit the sun, usually on highly elliptical orbits that carry them far beyond the orbit of Pluto at their farthest points.”
NASA said this comet, which was first seen on August 1, was in the Kreutz family of comets that broke off huge comets hundreds of years ago.
The comet did not impact the sun, but was “whipped around it,” NASA said. However, it likely was “torn apart and vaporized by the intense forces near the sun.”