Moving rapidly through planet Earth's night sky, Fragment C of
passed almost directly in front of
the Ring Nebula, and faint spiral galaxy
on May 8.
In fact, in this gorgeous view,
the bright head of Fragment C is separated by only about 0.1 degrees
from M57, with the tail apparently engulfing nebula and galaxy.
Recorded from Elizabeth, Illinois, USA, this picture
corresponds to the cosmic scene only 30 minutes after
of the approaching alignment.
of the comet against the background stars
and nebulae is easy to see when comparing the two images.
This comet's fragments
will be near their closest approach in the coming days,
about 10 million kilometers away, and
none pose any danger
to our fair planet.