National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has confirmed the fate of Comet ISON - it is gone. The 2013 Comet ISON, dubbed as the "Comet of the Century," was not able to survive its closest flyby with the Sun last November 28.
"Though the exact time of ISON's death is uncertain it does appear to be no more. All that is left is a cloud of debris without a nucleus," Alex Young of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center stated to AFP through an email on Tuesday.
Credit: YouTube.com/NASA Goddard
According to the ABC Science report, Comet ISON was expected to go through the temperature of 2700 Celsius and predicted to lose three million tons of mass per second while making its close travel around the Sun. Some astronomers predicted as well that the comet will not survive the solar flyby while others hope that the space object has the capability to endure the heat.
Even though Comet ISON vanished, scientists will still remember its journey across the solar system. "Never one to follow convention, ISON lived a dynamic and unpredictable life, alternating between periods of quiet reflection and violent outburst. Survived by approximately several trillion siblings, Comet ISON leaves behind an unprecedented legacy for astronomers, and the eternal gratitude of an enthralled global audience," scientist Karl Battams of the Naval Research Laboratory wrote on his brief obituary for Comet ISON.
Dean Pesnell, the project scientist at NASA's Solar Dynamics, claims there are still some things to be learned from Comet ISON's remains. "It's a dead comet, and we don't get a lot of those. Even as it moves away, people are still trying to look at it and see if there's still something there," Dean Pesnell stated in the ABC News report.
The scientist further shared: "There was a bright knot of material moving away from the sun. But people had to wait another day before they saw that it wasn't growing a new tail." Unfortunately, Comet ISON fell apart.
According to Mr Pesnell, Comet ISON is not a "big chunk of material" anymore but a "bunch of pieces slowly drifting apart from each other." Despite the comet's current status, the project scientist claims the remains can still provide valuable data. "People will be getting spectra from that knot of material. Those spectra can tell us what [the comet] is made out of," Mr Pesnell stated.
More Articles to Read:
2013 Comet ISON: Science Channel to Have Exclusive Documentary on Comet ISON's Trip Across the Solar System - [READ]
2013 Comet ISON: 'Comet of the Century' Showing Signs of Survival After Closest Approach to the Sun? - [READ]
2013 Comet ISON: Watch NASA STEREO-A Spacecraft's Captured Video on Comet ISON, 'Comet of the Century' Tails Shown in Hyper Suprime-Cam Photo - [READ]