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As comets strike their suns.

On a few recent occasions comets have been seen to hit the sun. Astronomers do not like to believe that any situation in nature is unique, so they quite generally suppose that if the sun has comets, so must other stars. And if occasionally oneof its comets strikes the sun, reasons H.C. Bhatt of the Physical Research Laboratory in Ahmedabad, India, then occasionally one of their comets ought to strike other stars.

Such an encounter could result in tidal disruption, vaporization or ionization of the comet, or all three. Observers of the star might then see a flare or the sudden appearance of emission lines in its spectrum from the ionized cometary matter.
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Author:Thomsem Dietrick E.
Publication:Science News
Date:Jan 26, 1985
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