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1000th Sungrazing Comet Discovered By SOHO

Date:
August 10, 2006
Source:
European Space Agency
Summary:
Polish amateur comet hunter Arkadiusz Kubczak recently discovered his third comet in SOHO LASCO coronagraph images, but this one was special: the 1000th SOHO comet discovery in the Kreutz group of sungrazing comets.

Comet SOHO-1185, the 1000th comet of the Kreutz family of sungrazing comets discovered in SOHO images.
Credit: s: ESA, NASA SOHO/LASCO team

Polish amateur comet hunter Arkadiusz Kubczak recently discovered his third comet in SOHO LASCO coronagraph images, but this one was special: the 1000th SOHO comet discovery in the Kreutz group of sungrazing comets.

While there is no formal definition of a 'sungrazing comet,' the term typically refers to the Kreutz-group comets, which have a perihelion distance of less than 0.01 of an Astronomical Unit (the mean distance between the Earth and the Sun), or some 1460000 km.

The 1185th comet discovered in data from the SOHO LASCO or SWAN instruments (the other 185 are not members of the Kreutz group), the faint object is officially designated C/2006 P7 (SOHO) by the Minor Planet Center of the International Astronomical Union.

Before the launch of SOHO in 1995 December, only some thirty members of the Kreutz group were known. All 1000 Kreutz comets are believed to be fragments of a single comet observed in c. 371 BCE by Aristotle and Ephorus, and the fragments themselves continue to fragment, making more sungrazing comets.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Space Agency. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Space Agency. "1000th Sungrazing Comet Discovered By SOHO." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 August 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/08/060810211115.htm>.
European Space Agency. (2006, August 10). 1000th Sungrazing Comet Discovered By SOHO. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/08/060810211115.htm
European Space Agency. "1000th Sungrazing Comet Discovered By SOHO." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/08/060810211115.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

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