German flight set to take off with comet tourists
FRANKFURT (REUTERS) - A German travel agency is selling tickets for a flight to give 88 astronomy buffs a close-up view of one of two rare comets expected to pass Earth this year.
Eclipse Travel, based in Bonn, has joined charter agency Air Partner and airline Air Berlin to organise flight AB1000 on March 16 as comet Pan-STARRS passes through the solar system, 100 million miles from Earth.
The last comet to dazzle Earth's night-time skies was Comet Hale-Bopp, which visited in 1997. Comet 17P/Holmes made a brief appearance in 2007.
The Boeing 737-700 flight will zig-zag at 11,000 metres altitude for the viewing with an Air Berlin spokesman saying only 88 of 144 seats on board will be filled to ensure all travellers are close to a window.