Rosetta Orbital Plans

A great ESA animation depicting Rosetta’s orbits and separation of the Philae lander.

On 12 November, Rosetta will move to 22.5 km from the comet and release Philae.

The lander will take about seven hours to get to the surface. In the meantime Rosetta will be maneuvered back to about 50 km from the comet so the lander stays visible. The lander communicates via Rosetta so the visibility is important. Eventually Rosetta’s orbit will be moved back to 20 km.

The actual rotation rate of the comet is 12.5 hours so yes the animation is sped up considerably – it does help the animation.

Video source (ESA)

Another Selfie from Rosetta

Rosetta selfie 16km from comet. Copyright ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

Rosetta selfie 16km from comet. Copyright ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

Very nice! This image was taken with the CIVA camera on the Philae lander which is of course still attached to ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft. Just wait until Philae sends pictures from the comet surface.

Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko is in the background about 16km away.

Check out the details at the Rosetta Blog.

There is a Hi-Res version at the ESA Space in Images site.

Boulder Cheops

A close-up of Boulder Cheops on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by Rosetta.  Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

A close-up of Boulder Cheops on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by Rosetta. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Wow another amazing image from ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft. Rosetta will be getting images from only 10 km very shortly even maybe by the end of day! Lowering the orbit is key in a very important phase of this amazing mission: in just over a month the Philae lander will be landing on comet 67P/G-C.

From ESA’s Space in Images:

This image of the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was taken by Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera on 19 September 2014, from a distance of 28.5 km.

The image features a large boulder casting a long shadow on the surface of the comet. The boulder has a maximum dimension of about 45 metres and is the largest structure within a group of boulders located on the lower side of the comet’s larger lobe. This cluster of boulders reminded scientists of the famous pyramids at Giza near Cairo in Egypt, and thus it has been named Cheops for the largest of those pyramids, the Great Pyramid, which was built as a tomb for the pharaoh Cheops (also known as Kheops or Khufu) around 2550 BC.

Rosetta blog

Philae Lander Deploy Date

siteJSept

The landing site for the Philae lander. Copyright ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

And that date is 12 November 2014.at 08:35 UTC.

A Rosetta NAVCAM image of the landing site for the Philae lander from 27.8 km from the center of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

I made an attempt to mark the general landing spot in the above image, click the image.  Funny how the different perspective between this image and the one from posted here on 16 Sept. made the task a bit more tricky than I first thought.

It’s close anyway.

See this image at ESA’s Space in Images site they have higher resolution versions.  Give finding your way around on this image to the other and see how you do.

See the Rosetta blog for more detail.

 

 

 

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