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Dust and Comets

15 January 2015

At http://phys.org/print340359127.html … we learn that the Rosetta Mission to Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, otherwise known as 67P, has been displaying evidence of multiple jets of dust issuing forth from the surface, and floating around the near limits of the surface are pockets of dust, and aggregates |(bigger particles of dust) that get caught up in the comet's coma and are left behind in its wake -providing a tail like cloud swept and shaped by the solar wind. Comets are accompanied by a constant cloud of dust ejected from the body itself – and not all of it is of recent origin. Mind you, I didn't realise our Boris, the redoubtable mayor of London, was so popular. He has had a dust grain swept up in Rosetta fly paper (or a sticky like instrument designed to capture dust grains) named after him, or somebody of a Boris like handle. This particular Boris is interesting as it contains sodium and magnesium.

We shall continue to receive news of lots more small discoveries as the year unfolds, culminating, hopefully, in a reactivation of the Philae probe on 67P as the comet get closer to the Sun. Happy New Year.

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