All Book Series by Susan May Warren
10 Amazing Facts About Comets And Asteroids
Skip to the Questions. Credit: S. Comets are objects composed mostly of ice and dust that grow tails when they approach the sun. When a comet nucleus nears the sun, solar energy begins to heat the ice and vaporize it. The gas flies off the comet, sometimes violently enough to break the nucleus apart , and throws dust up with it.
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If the sun was as tall as a typical front door, Earth would be the size of a nickel, the moon would be about as big as a green pea and Ceres the largest object in the main asteroid belt would be as small as a sesame seed. The first discovery of an asteroid-moon system was asteroid Ida and its moon Dactyl in One asteroid, named Chariklo, is known to have two dense and narrow rings. More than 10 spacecraft have explored asteroids, and we have even landed on an asteroid NEAR Shoemaker landed on an Eros. Ceres, is both the first and largest asteroid to be discovered in by Giuseppe Piazzi ; it is the closest dwarf planet to the sun and it encompasses over one-third of the estimated total mass of all the asteroids in the asteroid belt. Due to solar wind, comets tails point away from the Sun, regardless of the direction in which the comet is traveling.
Our solar system is filled with all sorts of interesting objects. Scientists are continuously studying these objects. Asteroids and comets are two kinds of bodies that orbit our sun and that scientists are still learning more about. Recent scientific studies have put asteroids and comets in the news. Let's take a closer look. Asteroids are rocky structures without atmospheres, and as far as we know, also without life.