Comet Pan-STARRS: Thousands Take Stunning Pictures Of Rare Sight (PICTURES)

A rare comet visible with the naked eye made a spectacular sight over the northern hemisphere this weekend.

The Comet Pan-STARRS passed just 26 million miles from the Sun on Sunday, and rewarded persistant astronomers with beautiful photographs of the stunning sight.

The comet - properly known as C/2011 L4 - is still visible to the naked eye in the north.

Named after the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System telescope in Hawaii where it was discovered - while still a billion kilometres away - the comet has just about peaked, according to

As it passes closer to the sun the ice, gas and dust inside the comet combusts, producing the long, luminous tail which distinguishes comets from asteroids.

Here are the best photos taken so far.

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