October 23, 2021

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Scientists track meteor shower to unusual comet seen every 4,000 years

3 min read

Meteor showers are the dazzling result of cometary debris building up along well-worn paths through the solar system, then burning up in Earth’s atmosphere as our planet crosses that dust trail.

It’s hard to call a path well-worn when something passes by only once every 3,967 years. But it turns out that type of long-period comet can still be tied to a specific meteor shower, as scientists have done with Comet C/2002 Y1 Juels-Holvorcem and the UY Lyncids shower. The research that connected the long haul ice ball and the shower triples the number of celestial displays that scientists have tied to specific comets that take more than 250 years to orbit the sun.

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