Rosetta’s Latest

Four image mosaic of comet 67P/C-G, using images taken on 19 September (rotated, cropped and lightly contrast enhanced). Caption and Image: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

Four image mosaic of comet 67P/C-G, using images taken on 19 September (rotated, cropped and lightly contrast enhanced). Caption and Image: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

A nice look at Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67P/G-C). This was also one of those four-image mosaics from the Rosetta Blog, The particular image here was put together and published on ESA’s Space in Images. It took some work as they explained in the Rosetta Blog link above.

The image was taken on 19 September 2014 by the NavCam on Rosetta from just 28.6 km. I thought I was seeing things, but no, that is material coming off the “neck” of the comet.

I like the boulders, seems like they  would roll off, which of course they won’t, interesting perspective though.

 

 

Site J for Philae

siteJ

The landing site for Rosetta’s Philae lander. Click for a close-up. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

siteJclose

If you live in the US, you may not have heard the news: Rosetta’s Philae lander is going to be landing at Site J, shown in the above ESA image. Click the image for a close-up view of the landing site.

Why Site J? ESA explains some of the considerations:

Site J offers the minimum risk to the lander in comparison to the other candidate sites, and is also scientifically interesting, with signs of activity nearby. At Site J, the majority of slopes are less than 30º relative to the local vertical, reducing the chances of Philae toppling over during touchdown. Site J also appears to have relatively few boulders and receives sufficient daily illumination to recharge Philae and continue science operations on the surface beyond the initial battery-powered phase.

Check out J marks the spot for Rosetta’s lander

Rosetta blog is home to all the good stuff.

Rosetta Closer Than Ever

A NAVCAM mosaic of 67P/G-C  ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

A NAVCAM mosaic of 67P/G-C ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

Rosetta took this image from 27.8 km from Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. That’s about half the distance of earlier images as mesured from the center of the comet.

The image scale here is 2.5 meters per pixel. Take a close look at the comet. . . See anything usual?

Check out Comet Watch – September 10. The link also has the four individual frames so you can put together a nice large image. I think I will print each out and see how piecing them together that way works.

More Than a Selfie

A Rosetta Mission selfie. Copyright ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

A Rosetta Mission selfie. Copyright ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

It’s more than a ‘selfie’  this Rosetta image gives us a wonderful perspective of the Rosetta mission and the comet from 50 km.  Well done!

Enjoy the view because a thruster burn should get Rosetta into a 30 km orbit.

From ESA’s Space In Images:

Using the CIVA camera on Rosetta’s Philae lander, the spacecraft have snapped a ‘selfie’ at comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. The image was taken on 7 September from a distance of about 50 km from the comet, and captures the side of the Rosetta spacecraft and one of Rosetta’s 14 m-long solar wings, with 67P/C-G in the background. Two images with different exposure times were combined to bring out the faint details in this very high contrast situation.

Rosetta Blog

Comet Surface Detail

Surface close-up of Comet 67P/G-C.  Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Surface close-up of Comet 67P/G-C. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

WOW! Look at that detail, one pixel equals 1.1 meters. Not exactly a ball of fuzz. This image is from the Rosetta blog’s “A PRELIMINARY MAP OF ROSETTA’S COMET” post. Rosetta Blog is getting busy — be sure to have a look.

The caption included on the Rosetta blog:

Jagged cliffs and prominent boulders are visible in this image taken by OSIRIS, Rosetta’s scientific imaging system, on 5 September 2014 from a distance of 62 kilometres from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The left part of the image shows a side view of the comet’s ‘body’, while the right is the back of its ‘head’. One pixel corresponds to 1.1 metres.

Comet Mosaic

Make a mosaic from Rosetta's comet pictures.   ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

Make a mosaic from Rosetta’s comet pictures. ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

ESA’s Rosetta is now taking images from just 61 km from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. That is close enough so Rosetta is imaging the comet in about quarters.

The above four-image mosaic is featured at the Rosetta blog was taken on 31 August 2014. It’s really not quite a mosaic yet  If you look at the four-panels you will see some overlap. The images were made from 20 minute exposures and there is also some rotation from the mutual movement of Rosetta and comet.

We, the public are invited to create a mosaic from them. Rosetta Blog has the four individual frames on the page for downloading which I have done.  Just scroll down the page linked above to get the individual shots.

I have everything loaded into a imaging program and working on my mosiac. The rotation is creating quite a challange!

Give it a try. I’ll post my effort if I can get anywhere with it.

Philae Landing Sites

The five candidate landing sites for Philae. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

The five candidate landing sites for Philae. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

ESA’s Landing Site Selection Group met over the past weekend and identified five possible landing sites for Rosetta’s Philae lander on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Three of the sites are on the smaller lobe and two on the larger one.

The original ten candidate sites were all marked with a letter designation, A to J and the group was narrowed to five at the meeting (A, B, C, J, I). The letters are only for identification and do not denote any preference.

After a detailed review for physical hazards and even long term illumination are complete, a primary landing site will be selected on 14 September. A secondary site will also be selected at that time.

Personally (today and very subject to change) I like:

Site A
Site B
Site I
Site C
Site J

Cliffs on the Comet

Rosetta gets to 64 km from the comet. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM.

Rosetta gets to 64 km from the comet. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM.

Here is an image from Rosetta of comet 67P/G-C on 22 August. Rosetta has been in “pyramid” shaped orbits to observe and approach the comet to get the date needed to get even closer in time. Check out the Rosetta blog for a nice description.

The close points of the trianglular or pyramid orbit has gone from 79 km to orbits in the 50 km range. the image above from 54 km. In just a couple of weeks the orbits will be close the 30 km.

I particularly like this image. Aside from the already good and improving detail, it is a nice look down into the central area below the cliffs. What is that material at the base of the cliff? Why is it there? Did it come from the “cliffs” like a landslide?

Get a full-res version at ESA’s Comet Watch.

 

Two Lobes of a Comet

Full-frame NAVCAM image taken on 18 August 2014 from a distance of about 84 km from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

Full-frame NAVCAM image taken on 18 August 2014 from a distance of about 84 km from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

The view of 67P/G-C or “the duck” as some are calling it. Rosetta was just 84 km away from the comet when this was taken.  Lobes, so much for comets to be nice round dirty snowballs.  Rosetta is redefining how a lot of us think about comets.

I just marvel at how good  this really is. Rosetta is orbiting comet 67/G-c about 412,000,000 km (~256 million miles) away from Earth and 527,000,000 km (~327 million miles) from the Sun and the comet is moving 15.7 km/s (35,120 mph). The numbers I show here are rounded and if you would like to see the actual numbers from ESA go the the very cool Where is Rosetta site and click on the Where is Rosetta today link at the bottom of the page. If you have not been at that site before you can watch the whole journey depicted in an animation – it’s really quite good.

There are a number of instruments on Rosetta and one of them, COSIMA is trying to capture dust particles coming from 67P. At the moment very little dust is coming from the comet so the plates used to catch the dust is being checked weekly during an initial exposure of a month. As the pair near the Sun more and more particles will be emitted.

One of the big questions is: what is this thing made of?  We will find out if things go as planned.  Yes, this IS going to be fun!

Rosetta blog