this is big
congratulations to all involved, very impressive!
After a 10-year-long chase of the pleasingly duck-shaped "67P", the European Space Agency’s Rosetta probe has become the first spacecraft in history to rendezvous with a comet. Watch live streaming video from eurospaceagency at livestream.com “After 10 years, five months and four days travelling towards our destination, …
But I do have to take issue with the statement “Europe’s Rosetta is now the first spacecraft in history to rendezvous with a comet, a major highlight in exploring our origins. Discoveries can start.”, as they seem to have completely forgotten about NASA's Deep Impact and Stardust missions, which impacted with, and returned cometary samples from comet Tempel-1.
Stardust - and Giotto*, in '86 - were flyby missions. Deep Impact though, yep, in a way - the main probe was flyby, the impactor did indeed rendezvous with Tempel one, albeit terminally.
Rosetta is the first probe to go into orbit around a comet.
*We opened the TV room of our student union late so we could watch it live. Shame it got thwacked....
Unfortunately I bought all the sequels a couple of years ago before I found out they weren't actually written by Arthur C. Clarke. When I read that he gave storylines for the books, I read them anyway to see where the story went, but the writting style was depressingly different.
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