Findings from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft have revealed a record-breaking comet, with an ion tail that stretched more than seven times the distance between Earth and the sun.

Geraint Jones at University College London and his colleagues looked through past data from the mission in 2002, when Cassini was on its way from Jupiter to Saturn. The spacecraft used its plasma instrument from 2001 to 2003 to study charged particles from the sun called the solar wind.

Jones and his team found a notable increase in protons detected …