Scorpio’s World

Thoughts on Politics, Race, and Middle Earth

“I’m In Awe”

Posted by scorpiomkm on October 1, 2007

*My ‘High Place’ in the Oakland Hills

Solar Storm Rips Tail From Comet

By Andrea Thompson

(Oct. 1) – A storm from the sun ripped a tail off a comet, and a NASA  satellite captured the whole event.

Comet Encke's tail is seen in images taken by a satellite designed to monitor solar activity. At left, the comet's tail is torn off by a coronal mass ejection.


Comet Encke’s tail is seen in images taken by a satellite designed to monitor solar activity. At left, the comet’s tail is torn off by a coronal mass ejection.

The spectacular cosmic crash occurred on April 20 when the sun cast out a coronal mass ejection (CME), or large cloud of magnetized gas. The tempest was thrust directly in the path of Comet Encke, which was traveling around the sun, within the orbit of Mercury. As the gas swept over the comet, its tail brightened and then was separated completely from its parent icy rock and carried away.

NASA’s pair of Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) satellites captured the whole incident in newly released images and video.

“We were awestruck when we saw these images,” said Angelos Vourlidas of the Naval Research Laboratory. “This is the first time we’ve witnessed a collision between a coronal mass ejection and a comet, and the surprise of seeing the disconnection of the tail was the icing on the cake.”

Comets are icy leftovers from the solar system’s formation billions of years ago. They occasionally detour from their home in the cold, distant regions of the solar system, after a gravitational tug from a planet or another comet sends them into the inner solar system.

The sun’s heat vaporizes gas and dust from the ice core of the comet, forming its tail.

CMEs are violent eruptions on the sun, with masses upwards of a few billion tons traveling anywhere from 62 to 1,864 miles per second (100 to 3,000 kilometers per second). They can cause geomagnetic storms in the Earth’s atmosphere, which can disrupt satellite and radio communications and sometimes disable satellites.


Galaxies in deep space are captured in a photograph by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2005. Scientists announced last month that they found a void in the universe that’s far bigger than they ever imagined.

While scientists were aware that a comet’s tail would occasionally completely disconnect and suspected CMEs were the culprit, this is the first observation of the violent event.

The NASA observations are detailed in the Oct. 10 issue of Atmospheric Journal Letters.

Another study announced today showed comets can sometimes slow the solar wind down, too.


It has always been my contention that compared to Space and the Universe, all the Affairs of Mankind pale in comparison. In fact, it’s most discomforting to think just how insignificant and fragile we are here on this good earth of ours.


An off course comet or asteroid; a sudden miscalculation as to the sun’s life span; or a previously unsuspected finding of an approaching Black Hole ~ all could instantly wipe earth off the Universal Map; yet we go on about our business, thinking that WE ALONE are all that counts.



KNOWING what we know about the vast Universe (which is very little), it’s almost a Sin that Mankind remains constrained to the smallest dimensions within our own brain. I guess that’s why all of the Great Religious Books emphasize the Seeking of the boundless Spiritual aspects of LIFE. For when Mankind seeks an Understanding of the Spirit, then all of the petty aspects of LIFE dissolve into the shadows.


But WE want to Believe that WE are our brains, or our body, or our feelings, or our attitudes …. when in Reality WE are none of these things!!



Religion, if nothing else, Teaches US the power and wisdom of HUMILITY. Because through HUMILITY we open ourselves to seeking an Understanding of Great Things near and far. WE develop a thirst for KNOWLEDGE for things both of ourselves and not. After all, since it is a CERTAINTY that even earth will perish ~ why get out of bed each morning if not for a Seeking of LIFE beyond the narrow confines of our own Minds?



What does Celebrity News REALLY have to do with YOU?



In the grand scheme of things ~ what difference to YOU what Iraqis eventually decide for themselves?



Spiritually, what difference to YOU is it who wins the Presidency in 08?




There are far Greater Events occurring right above your head each day. Too, even beneath YOUR feet or right in the air YOU breath …. unimaginable Natural Events are awaiting to spring forth. THAT IS WHY:



 I will look to the Hills from where my Strength cometh from!” 


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