This Day In History: ‘Deep Impact’ Science Team Reports Water On Comet 10 Years Ago

By  //  February 2, 2016

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Today (February 2) in 2006, the Deep Impact science team reported the first observation of water on the surface of a comet. (NASA Image)

NASA – On February 2, 2006, the Deep Impact science team reported the first observation of water on the surface of a comet.

The comet-hunting Deep Impact probe was designed with two parts: a “flyby” and an “impactor” probe.

As you may guess, the “impactor” probe was essentially a projectile, designed for collision with the Temple 1 comet.

After the “impactor” collided with the comet and produced a football-field-sized crater, the “flyby” probe collected images of the destructive impact–images that helped deduce the presence of water on the comet’s surface.


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