, Volume 90, Issue 1-4, pp 67-76

The Shadow of Comet Hale–Bopp in Lyman-Alpha

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Abstract

For a few months around perihelion, thecentral part of the Hale–Bopp hydrogencloud has been optically thick to thesolar Lyα radiation, and hassignificantly reduced the solar flux availablefor the resonance glow of interstellarhydrogen beyond the comet. This shadowing effecton the interstellar gas is the first everobserved comet shadow. It is modeled andcompared with SWAN observations. Shadowmodelling will help to constrain the cometwater production and radiative transfer effectsin the interstellar ionisation cavity.