Comet Hale-Bopp captures imaginations world11ide as it streaks past Earth for the first time in 1,200 years-or, since 2203 B.C. llalc-Bopp next returns in 4397.

'Y On October 13,the Britishjet car Th!Ust SSG becomes the first vehicle to break the sound barrier on land, traveling 766.6 miles per hour in the Nevada desert.

A El Nino stirs up global weather

patterns. Caused by warmer-than– normal water temperatures in the equatorial Pacific. the '97 El Niiio is blamed for storms and weather problems worldwide.

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In December, 159 nations gather in Kroto, Japan, and negotiate aclimate treaty to combat global warming by reducing greenhouse gases.

The Food and Drug Administration approves adental laser for treating cavities. Unlike traditional dental drills, the laser inmost cases causes virtual~· no discomfort.

A Protesters unsuccessfullyattempt toprevent theOctober launch of NASA's Cassini spacecraft to Saturn, fearingan accident could shower theEarthwith the rocket's radioactive plutonium.

~ Riven, the

long-awaited computer adventure game sequel toMyst, proves to be just as popular andeven moresophisticated visually than its predecessor.

French oceanographer and award-1vinning filmmaker Jacques Cousteau dies in June at 87. Hiswork gained renown through the popular television series "The Undersea World

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