Dr. Alan Hale, Thomas Bopp, Dr. Don Yeomans and David Levy participated in a Comet Hale-Bopp viewing event and panel discussion about comet exploration titled "Comet Chasers: On the Trail of a Comet," which was held at the California Institute of Technology's Beckman Auditorium on Friday, April 11, 1997. More than 1,500 people attended the event, which was sponsored by the Galileo and Stardust projects. All of the photos shown here were taken by Ron Baalke using a Ricoh DC-2 digital camera provided by the Stardust project.
Comet Hale-Bopp was discovered independently on July 22, 1995, by astronomer Hale and amateur astronomer Bopp from outside their respective locations of Cloudcroft, NM, and Phoenix, AZ. At the time of its discovery, Comet Hale-Bopp was more than 929 million kilometers (577 million miles) from Earth, appearing over 1,000 times brighter than Comet Halley did at that same distance.
After an introduction given by JPL director Dr. Edward Stone, a comet slideshow was given by Catherine Collins, Lead Stardust Outreach Coordinator, and Leslie Lowes, Lead Galileo Outreach Coordinator. After the slideshow, the four panelists were then introduced.
The panel discussion, moderated by David Levy, and was lively and entertaining.
Comet Hale-Bopp Home Page