Above: Comet 17P/Holmes expanding during the period 2007 Oct 27.1 - Nov
9.1 UT after suffering a major explosive event on 2007 Oct 23.9 UT.
Dust trails from the main nucleus of the comet and from several other
nearby areas presumably created at the time of the explosion can be seen
in the area to the South-West (lower right).
Below, the comet seen 1 month after the initial outburst, with a
diameter of about 35', slightly larger in apparent size than the Sun or
Moon. Being further away from us than the Sun is, its physical diameter
of ~2.5m Km was actually 1.8 times larger than the Sun's diameter of
1.4m Km. A mosaic of 9 fields was needed to cover the full extent of the
dust halo. A fainter but even larger halo of gas expelled during the
initial explosion is wider than the field of view and is not seen here.