What Is a Comet?

A comet is almost like a dirty snowball. A comet is a ball of dust, ice, and rock that travels around the sun. It can take some comets thousands of years to travel around the sun. That is a long journey!

The main part of a comet is called the “nucleus.” The “nucleus” of a comet can be as long as a few miles across. It is made of dust and ice.

When a comet moves closer to the sun, it gets warmer. The comet’s ice melts and changes into gas. Pieces of dust and gas start trailing behind it. This makes the comet look like it has a tail! In fact, comets usually have two tails. These tails can be hundreds of miles long.

Astronomers know about a few thousands of comets, but they think there actually may be billions of comets in our solar system. One famous comet is called Halley’s Comet. People can see this comet from Earth about every 76 years. The next time people will be able to see the comet is in 2061.

Do you want to see Halley’s Comet? If so, remember to keep an eye out around the year 2061!