Fast Facts for Kids
Halley's Comet Facts for Kids

Halley's Comet Facts for Kids

  • Comet Name: Halley’s Comet or Comet Halley
  • Comet Designation: 1P/Halley
  • Comet Type: Short-Period Comet (Periodic Comet)
  • Orbital Period: About 75 Years
  • First Observed: 240 BCE (confirmed sighting)
  • Last Observed: 1968
  • Next Observation: 2061

18 Halley's Comet Facts For Kids

  1. Halley’s Comet, also known as Comet Halley, is a periodic comet that is visible to the naked eye from Earth.
  2. The official designation for Halley’s Comet is 1P/Halley.
  3. Halley’s Comet is named after English astronomer Edmon Halley, the person who proved Comet Halley was a periodic comet in 1705.
  4. Comet Halley has been known for thousands of years, with the first potential record in 467 BCE in ancient Greece.
  5. Halley’s Comet is a short-period comet since its orbital period is less than 200 years.
  6. Comet Halley is estimated to have a dimension of 9.3 miles by 5 miles.
  7. Comet Halley is one of the least reflective objects in our Solar System, it only reflects 3% of the light that hits it.
  8. Halley’s Comet has an orbital period of 74.7 to 75 years and in theory could be witnessed twice in a single lifetime.
  9. It is estimated that Halley’s Comet has been in its current orbit for the last 16,000 years.
  10. The latest time Comet Halley approach Earth was in 1986 and prior to that in 1910.
  11. The closest recorded approach of Halley’s Comet to Earth was in 837 at 3.07 million miles or 12 times closer than its closest approach in 1986 which was 39 million miles.
  12. Halley’s Comet was estimated to be traveling at ~2,000 miles per hour in 1948 when it was its at its farthest from the Sun.
  13. Halley’s Comet was estimated to be traveling at ~122,000 miles per hour in 1986 when it was at its closest to the Sun.
  14. Halley’s Comet was first photographed in 1910, along with the first spectroscopic data read.
  15. Comet Halley was the first comet to be observed in detail by a spacecraft.
  16. Soviet Vega 1 space probe took a picture of Halley’s Comet nucleus on March 4th, 1986, the first ever image of a comet’s nucleus.
  17. The next time Halley’s Comet would come near Earth and be visible with the naked eye is in 2061 and then 2134.
  18. On July 28th, 2061, Comet Halley will have its closest approach to Earth.

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Halley's Comet Pictures

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the below images will be helpful for your research on the Comet Halley. Below are three pictures of Halley's Comet. These pictures should help you better understand Halley's Comet, the most famous comet in recorded human history.

Halley's Comet Nucleus in 1986

A picture of Halley's comet nucleus in 1986.

Credit: Halley Multicolor Camera Team, Giotto Project, ESA
Comet Halley and the Milky Way in 1986

A picture of Comet Halley and the Milky Way in 1986.

Credit: Kuiper Airborne Observatory, NASA
Comet Halley in the Sky in 1986

A picture of Comet Halley in the Sky in 1986.

Credit: W. Liller, Easter Island, part of the International Halley Watch (IHW) Large Scale Phenomena Network.

Comet Halley Resources

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