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Photos of Halley's Comet Through History

Core of Halley's Comet

ESA

This photo of Halley's comet was taken by the Russian Vega 2 spacecraft, one of two Soviet probes (Vega 1 was the other) to rendezvous with the comet during its 1986 trip through the solar system in March 1986. The closest approach of Vega 1 to Halley was 8890 km while Vega 2 had a close encounter at 8030 km.

Halley's Comet in 1910 from Mount Wilson Observatory

NASA/JPL

Halley's Comet as photographed May 8, 1910, by Dr. G.W. Ritchey using the 60-inch (1.5-meter) telescope at Mount Wilson Observatory, Calif., during the comet's last appearance. The head of the comet and the beginning of its long tail are shown. Short, straight streaks are background stars.

Meteor Shower Created by Halley's Comet Peaks Thursday

NASA.

This NASA graphic shows where to look in the constellation Aquarius for the Eta Aquarid meteor shower, which is made of the remains from Halley's Comet. Full May 2010 viewing info.

Composite Image of Halley's Comet

ESA/MPAE

This image is composed of 68 images of varying resolution. The data at the brightest point on the nucleus is at the highest resolution (50 m).

The Sun comes from 30 deg above the horizontal to the left and is 17 deg behind the image plane (observation phase angle of 107 deg). The night side of the nucleus can be seen silhouetted against a background of bright dust in the far-field. Jets can be seen originating from two regions on the nucleus. Structure can be seen within the jets.

A bright area is seen within the night side of the nucleus. We believe this to be a hill or mountain approximately 500 m high.

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