NASA has caught a comet death on camera for the first time. The comet flew very close to the Sun, and it got evaporated due to the excess heat.
Astronomers caught the death of the ultra bright comet with the NASA's Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).The comet appeared in the right side of the Sun and it was around 150 to 300 feet long. The comet was travelling 400 miles per second and almost reached the Sun's surface before it got evaporated. In just 20 minutes, the comet got melt completely.
According to the astronomers, the comet belongs to the group of comets called Kreutz comets, which are Sun-gazing comets and orbit very close to the Sun. Such comets usually get evaporated when they get close to the Sun. In every three days, new Kreutz comet is seen but still now no one has seen how the comet dies.
"It was moving along at almost 400 miles per second through the intense heat of the Sun - and was literally being evaporated away." says Karel Schrijver, a solar scientist at Lockheed Martin in Palo Alto.
"I am so used to seeing comets simply disappearing in the SOHO images. It was breathtaking to see one truly evaporating in the corona like that," says Karl Battams, a scientist from the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington DC.
Watch the video of the comet death: