Glossary term: Comet Nucleus
Description: A comet nucleus is the core of a comet. This is a solid object, similar to a dirty snowball, made with ice and rocky, dusty particles. Far from the Sun the nucleus is the sole component of the comet. Closer to the Sun a comet's nucleus is surrounded by a coma with a tail pointing away from the Sun.Related Terms:
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Term and definition status: This term and its definition is still awaiting approval
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Comet 67P/Churyumov-GerasimenkoCaption: Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko's nucleus is a "dirty snowball" made of a mixture of frozen materials and dust. It is shaped like two large lobes: one 4.1 km × 3.3 km × 1.8 km, the other 2.6 km × 2.3 km × 1.8 km. These lobes are connected by a small bridge. When a cometary nucleus such as this nears the Sun its frozen, icy material is heated, turning into gas. This, combined with the embedded dust, provide the material for the comet's characteristic coma and tail.
Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM credit link
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