Althought I was clouded out last night, I’ve been enjoying the many pictures which arrived in my inbox overnight. Here are some sent to BBC News, and very lovely they are too.
Or at least, they are until we click through to picture 5, where we’re told that
Comet McNaught is passing close to the Sun, whose gravity pulls material off, giving it a big and visible ‘debris field’
which happens to be complete rubbish (as well as annoying english teachers around the world by only mustering ‘big’ and ‘visible’ as adjectives). It is the warming of the comet as it approaches the Sun that leads to the expulsion of material, which is then driven away from the Sun by the solar wind. Nothing to do with gravity at all. But I didn’t need to tell you that, did I?
UpdateBBC site now corrected.