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Ice and Stone


Comet of the Week: Bennett 1969i

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Special Topic: Ancient Ideas about Comets

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Comet of the Week: Comet Hyakutake C/1996 B2

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Special Topic: “Small Bodies” and the Electromagnetic Spectrum

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Comet Whipple-Fedtke-Tevzadze 1942g’s Perihelion: 1943 February 6.72, q = 1.354 AU  The name of Fred Whipple is legendary in cometary astronomy. He spent several decades as an astronomer and professor at Harvard University, and is best known for developing what he called the “icy conglomerate” model of a comet’s nucleus (more commonly referred to as the …

Few, if any, sights in the nighttime sky are more impressive than that of a bright, long-tailed comet. It is little wonder that our ancestors of just a few centuries ago, who had little idea of what they were actually seeing, were amazed and perhaps even terrified of the sight, and even today the appearance …

Do your best to find these words that are scattered throughout the sixth weekly edition of Ice and Stone 2020. Words may be placed horizontally or vertically. Letters in the grid may be used in more than one word, but not all the letters in the grid have to appear in a word.   More from …

FEBRUARY 17, 1930:  A bright meteor appears in the sky above the midwestern U.S. and falls to the ground near Paragould, Arkansas. With a total mass of 370 kg, the Paragould meteorite, a stony chondrite, is the second-largest meteorite fall seen from and recovered in North America.  FEBRUARY 17, 1996: The Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) …

Comet 3D/Biela 1846 II’s Perihelion: 1846 February 11.49, q = 0.856 AU  The stories of the first two numbered periodic comets, 1P/Halley and 2P/Encke – both of which are future “Comets of the Week” – are well known. The third numbered periodic comet also has an interesting story, but unlike the earlier two, it will likely …

Five weeks ago I devoted the “Special Topics” presentation to the subject of the Oort Cloud, the large spherical cloud of comets that is believed to enshroud the solar system out to distances of several tens of thousands of Astronomical Units. The comets in the Oort Cloud have been there since the forming Jupiter and …