Rosetta lander Philae loose leaves room for comet landing




The Philae lander space has been released by ESA’s Rosetta satellite. Philae to make a landing on the duck-shaped comet 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Thus, the first successful landing comet would be a fact. Philae will include taking samples of the comet.

The landing of the spacecraft caused a lot of tension at ESA, partly because of the huge distances provide a delay of half an hour between the comet lander and the mission control center. Although the lander to about five-thirty already been released, the team was able to verify that only four to ten. The Philae probe can no longer be influenced by the slowdown are now being released by Rosetta. The landing takes about seven hours and is expected to be followed by a special livestream .

ESA has long searched for a suitable landing site on the odd shaped comet for the Philae probe. Ultimately, there is only one place on 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko found that could be safely landed and where adequate sunlight is available for the solar panels of the probe. Also, the location, which has been called Agilkia, deemed suitable for carrying out drilling in the comet surface by the cube-shaped spacecraft.

Because it is unclear what type of surface has 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko and the four-kilometer comet also has almost no gravity, Philae chaining themselves to the comet surface fixed using harpoons. In the coming months Philae must collect and analyze samples. On the basis of this knowledge, ESA-scientists want to make comparisons with substances on earth. This may include eg whether the theory is plausible stating that meteorite impacts on Earth have played a role in the origin of life. The samples should provide more insight into the origin of the solar system. The end of the mission is scheduled on December 31, 2015.

Images of comet 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko Images of comet 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko Images of comet 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko

ESA Rosetta launched on March 2, 2004 from Europe’s spaceport in Kourou in French Guiana. In total, the satellite over more than ten years there done to achieve the comet, including a period in which the satellite has been held in a “hibernation” in order to save fuel consumption. In January this year, the ‘comet chaser’ successfully from sleep awakened . Since the Rosetta probe after a space voyage of more than six billion kilometers on August 6 at the comet arrived he already has numerous photographs taken of his target. Further, the Rosetta includes a mass spectrometer, a micro-thermometer and an ultraviolet spectrograph. The spectrograph measurements have been carried out in the tail of the comet and the ‘coma’, a shell that occurs when the comet gets closer to the sun.

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