Closing in on Comet Hartley 2
This close-up view of comet Hartley 2 was taken as NASA's EPOXI mission approached the comet at 6:58 a.m. PDT (9:58 a.m. EDT). The spacecraft's Medium-Resolution Instrument snapped the picture from a distance of 1,417 kilometers (880 miles). The sun is to the right.
The comet's nucleus, or main body, is approximately 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) long and .4 kilometers (.25 miles) at the "neck," or most narrow portion. Jets can be seen streaming out of the nucleus.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD