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The Planetary Report • March/April 1987

Halley's Comet Wrap-Up

On the Cover: With images like this one, scientists were at last able to take a close look at the nucleus of Halley's Comet. Here sunlight is coming from the left, heating the icy body so that dust and gas jets erupt from its surface. Near the top are bright spots, and below them is a crater-like feature about 1.5 kilometers in diameter. This could be a slump feature formed by the outgassing of nearby jets. Below and right of the "crater" is a bright feature about 400 meters high that some scientists call "the mountain."
Image taken by the Halley Multicolor Camera. ©1986 Max Planck Institut für Aeronomie, Lindau/Harz, F. R. G., provided by H. J. Reitsema and W. A. Delamere, Ball Aerospace

Features

3 Studying Halley's Comet from Earth and from Space: Jürgen Rahe, head of the International Halley Watch Eastern Lead Center, introduces our special issue on Halley's Comet.

5 The Science of Comets: A Post-Encounter Assessment: D. Asoka Mendis summarizes what we've learned, and what questions remain.

8 The Wobbling Nucleus of Halley's Comet: Michael Belton looks at the complicated rotational state of the heart of the comet.

14 Halley's Comet Was Here! A Look at Halleymania: Louis Friedman describes how a comet captured worldwide attention.

16 The Next Step in Exploring Comets: Marcia Neugebauer asks: Where do we go from here?

Departments

19 News & Reviews Will NASA ever visit a comet?

20 World Watch The new NASA budget.

21 Society Notes Hawaii calls The Planetary Society.

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