Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Collision Course

Comet McNaught

Comet McNaught photographed from Perth revealing why it was sometimes called a “fountain in the sky”.

By Stephen Luntz

Rob McNaught discovered the brightest comet of recent years and alerted observers to a meteor storm, but is now struggling for funds to detect asteroids on a collision course with Earth.

McNaught has enabled millions to witness astronomical events that put any fireworks display to shame, yet his efforts may cease for the lack of a budget smaller than what large cities spend each New Year’s Eve on their local fireworks show.

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