Halley’s Comet is a periodic comet. It returns to the earth’s vicinity about every 75 years. This comet is named after an English astronomer Edmond Halley. Edmond Halley observed it in 1682 and examined the reports of this comet approaching earth in 1531, 1607 and 1682. He confirmed that they are not three different comets. It is a periodic comet that is approaching earth again and again. Halley also predicted that it will be seen again in 1758. The most recent appearance of Halley’s Comet was in 1986. This comet is dark and reflects only 4% of the sunlight it receives.
Fast Facts: –
- It is considered a short-term comet because it takes less than 200 years to orbit the Sun.
- This comet is believed to have originated in the Oort cloud.
- Halley’s Comet orbits the Sun in the elliptical shape.
- It is the first ever periodic comet to be identified. This is the reason why it is sometimes referred as 1P. Here P stands for ‘periodic’.
- This comet is retrograde that means it orbits the Sun in the opposite direction of planetary orbits.
- Europe’s Giotto probe was the closest that any other probe ever gotten to Halley’s Comet.
- This comet proves a theory that some comets are members of the solar system and orbit the Sun.
- The tail and the fuzzy light around the comet are known as a coma.
- It is estimated that this comet is about 4.5 billion years old.
- According to calculations, it is believed that this comet would reappear in the year 2061.
- The most famous appearance of the comet occurred before the invasion of England by William the Conqueror.
- NASA’s International Cometary Explorer also captured pictures of Halley’s Comet from 28 million kilometers away.