Swan Dive into the Sun (March 16, 2012)
LASCO C3 Composite
Sungrazing Comet SWAN (this is its unofficial name), which dove into the Sun's atmosphere late on March 14, 2011, apparently did not survive the trip. Comet SWAN enters the solar corona but does not exit again. SOHO's two coronagraphs followed the comet's track from when it first appeared on Mar 13 through its apparent demise after it made a beeline right towards the Sun. Comet SWAN was a Kreutz sungrazer, a fragment of the same ancient comet that produced sungrazing Comet Lovejoy in Dec. 2011.
Comet Lovejoy was quite a bit larger and the only comet observed by SOHO to survive its pass around the Sun. The CME emerging from the sun's northwestern limb near the end of the movie was not caused by this tiny comet's impact. It is just another eruption of active region1429.
SOHO began its Weekly Pick some time after sending a weekly image or video clip to the American Museum of Natural History (Rose Center) in New York City. There, the SOHO Weekly Pick is displayed with some annotations on a large plasma display.
If your institution would also like to receive the same Weekly Pick from us for display (usually in Photoshop or QuickTime format), please send your inquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org.