Feeds

Hubble snaps flashy Tempel-1

Warm up display

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

Hubble has snapped some snazzy images of Comet Tempel-1, the target of NASA's Deep Impact probe, just days before the two bodies are set to collide.

Hubble snaps the comet. Credits NASA, ESA, P. Feldman (Johns Hopkins University), and H. Weaver (Applied Physics Lab)

The pictures show a jet of dust streaming towards the sun from the icy core of the comet, in what astronomers hope is a warm up for the display many are expecting when Deep Impact hits the comet on 4 July.

Comets are prone to outbursts of activity like this, but the exact reasons for the activity are not well understood, according to the European Space Agency. One theory is that the heat from the sun opened a crack on the surface of the comet's nucleus, allowing trapped dust and gas to escape.

Another explanation is that a chunk of the surface itself was lifted off the nucleus as gas pressure built up below it. As the gas explodes, it might break the crust into tiny pieces, resulting in the fan shaped expulsion seen in the pictures.

When Deep Impact arrives at the comet on Monday next week, astronomers hope the impact will cause a similar display as the probe crashes in to the comet at many thousands of miles an hour. ®

Related stories

Green light for tests on really big telescope designs
Bush bins Hubble fix
Deep Impact en route to Tempel 1
NASA throws Deep Impact spacecraft at comet

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
R.I.P. LADEE: Probe smashes into lunar surface at 3,600mph
Swan dive signs off successful science mission
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.