Here are some natural fireworks to ring in the new year. 😉
Asteroid P/2010 A2, photographed by Hubble, was initially thought to be a comet, but further analysis showed that its “tail” was actually debris from a recent, violent impact.
Here’s Comet Tempel 1, as seen by the Deep Impact spacecraft moments after its copper impactor slammed into the nucleus.
The doomed supermassive star (possibly double star) Eta Carinae; it could explode in a gigantic supernova at pretty much any time. It’s already been shedding layers of material at a incredible pace; it has semi-regular outbursts, and this material was cast off by an outburst observed in 1841.
The death of Comet ISON, as seen by SOHO.