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24 December, 19:35

Halley's comet has a perihelion distance of 0.6 au and an orbital period of 76 years. what is its aphelion distance from the sun?

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  1. 24 December, 19:42
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    Aphelios derived from the Greek word, "apo" means far and "helios" meaning sun, it means far away from the sun.

    To solve:

    The Period gives the semi-major axis of the orbit:

    a3 = P2 a = P2/3 = (76 AU) 2/3 = 17.9 AU

    so ...

    ra + rp = 2a ra = 2a - rp = 2 (17.9) - 0.6 = 35.2 AU

    Therefore, Halley's Comet stretches maximum distance from the Sun between the orbits of the planets, Neptune and Pluto.
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