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Rosetta probe arrives at comet after 10 years


Posted on Wednesday, 6 August, 2014 | Comment icon 86 comments

Rosetta has finally arrived at its destination. Image Credit: CC BY-3.0 DLR
The European spacecraft has finally reached its destination after traveling over 6 billion kilometers.
Launched back in March 2004 aboard an Ariane 5 rocket, Rosetta has been pursuing comet 67P across the solar system in an epic chase that has lasted more than a decade.

"After 10 years, five months and four days travelling towards our destination, looping around the Sun five times and clocking up 6.4 billion km, we are delighted to announce finally 'we are here'," said ESA's director general Jean-Jacques Dordain.

Over the last two months the probe had been gradually slowing down as it approached its destination before performing a final complex series of thruster burns and maneuvers to place it in a hyberbolic orbit at a distance of 100km from the comet.

Rosetta is now set to spend the next 15 months studying 67P in unprecedented detail using its array of on-board instruments. A small lander will also be touching down on the comet's surface to take further readings in the near future.

Source: BBC News | Comments (86)

Tags: Rosetta, Comet


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #77 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 19 August, 2014, 21:17
Today's new image: Comet on 18 August 2014 - NavCam
Comment icon #78 Posted by Merc14 on 20 August, 2014, 1:18
Today's new image: Comet on 18 August 2014 - NavCam Great image. My son is finally back and from Turkey and I am showing him these images and he is enthralled with the way this comet is structured. Good stuff waspie. ESA vids tomorrow
Comment icon #79 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 20 August, 2014, 21:24
My son is finally back and from Turkey and I am showing him these images and he is enthralled with the way this comet is structured. Another image to enthral your son: Comet on 19 August 2014 - NavCam
Comment icon #80 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 21 August, 2014, 14:14
Today's daily dose of comet: Comet on 20 August 2014 - NavCam
Comment icon #81 Posted by Merc14 on 21 August, 2014, 18:49
Another image to enthral your son: Comet on 19 August 2014 - NavCam I think it enthralled him because his image of a comet was a dirty snowball, a round object more whitish than blackish and here is Rosetta imaging a real one and it looks like this! So we got to talk about how comets are all kinds of different shapes. He wondered where the halo is so we got to talk about the coma and why 67p isn't outgassing yet. I learn a lot from you guys here that I pass on to him so thanks for that. Great stuff.
Comment icon #82 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 22 August, 2014, 16:55
Friday's image: Comet on 21 August 2014 - NavCam
Comment icon #83 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 23 August, 2014, 21:26
One for Saturday: Comet on 22 August 2014 - NavCam
Comment icon #84 Posted by toast on 30 August, 2014, 9:05
Here is a nice ESA clip showing the path of ROSETTA, catching 67P :
Comment icon #85 Posted by Merc14 on 12 September, 2014, 12:37
Rosetta takes a selfie with 67P (taken with the CIVA Camera) http://earthsky.org/...e437a-394012957
Comment icon #86 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 12 September, 2014, 13:52
Do try and keep up Merc, that picture was posted in the gallery and a link provided to it in this thread: http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=271408 a couple of days ago. There is a reason that this thread has gone quiet, it's because New images are being posted in the newer thread.


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