Space & Astronomy
Rosetta is destroyed in comet crash-landing
By T.K. Randall
September 30, 2016 · 14 comments
The space probe's mission has finally come to an end. Image Credit: CC BY-3.0 DLR
ESA's Rosetta spacecraft has gone out in a blaze of glory by deliberately colliding with comet 67P.
Launched all the way back in 2004, the first space probe ever to enter in to orbit around a comet arrived at its destination after a journey through space spanning more than 10 years.
Accompanying Rosetta was Philae, a small lander which itself managed to secure a place in the history books when it touched down on the comet's surface after a short but harrowing descent.
Now with the last of its fuel reserves almost exhausted and having taught us more about comets than anyone thought possible, Rosetta has ended its historic mission in spectacular fashion by crash-landing on to the comet's surface at approximately 7:19am Eastern Time (ET) this morning.
The final images it returned showed close-ups of the comet's surface from a height of 167ft.
"This is it," said mission manager Patrick Martin. "I can announce the full success of this historic descent of Rosetta toward 67P, and I declare the primary mission operations ended for Rosetta."
Source: New York Times
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