Every coma has a silver lining.
I wonder how much more was discovered by people staring at images trying to find this poor little lost box of tricks?
The European Space Agency's (ESA) obsolete robotic lander Philae has been spotted lying on its side in the dark depths of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko as the Rosetta mission nears completion. The images were snapped on 2 September by the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera on board the spacecraft, which has orbited the comet within …
@Matt 21 I can confirm this theory from my extensive testing (1 experience). I lost my disc for a PlayStation 2 game, I can't remember what it was but I looked in all the places I thought it should be with no success. I gave in and bought a used copy for not much money and found the misplaced disc within a day after having looked on and off for a month.
If you look at the image it looks like Philae is only about 2m away from being in Sunlight. Just 2m. 2 tiny metres. After travelling 6,4 billion kilometres. 2 metres is the difference between a mission lasting 60 hours and a mission lasting days, maybe months.
2 metres. Space is a harsh mistress...
And noble Rosetta, I hope your final crash is soft. And we will think of you as your comet steed finally flies out to the chill reaches of the solar system, carrying humanity's astonishing first attempt to ride a comet. You will stand as mute representatives of smart monkeys whose brains cannot be thwarted by distance or imagination. Ave and Vale!
Why crash rosetta. Can't it just be left to float about. Its not cluttering up earth orbit like all the other junk. After 12 years it deserves to be left to float about. One day it might be found (Still holding out hope Voyager will be found one day). Yes, I may have been watching too much star trek recently.....
Setting down as gently as possible has to be weighed against using more fuel for stationkeeping and doing a little more science. The balance in this case seems to fall on orbiting a little longer and setting down a little less gently. Given orbital velocity around the comet is measured in single digit meter per seconds the touchdown will be relatively mild in space vehicle context in any case.
Actually, that crash wouldn't bend a fender if Rosetta was a car. They're trying to set it down really gently; unfortunately though, for some obscure legal reasons apparently, they'll have to switch it off right after landing.
Anyway, I hope we'll at least get to see real close-up pictures of the ground.
Earth receives an infringement for Fly Tipping by the Galactic Council.
Well, the Esperance Shire Council did it to NASA.
"The skylab crash put Esperance on the map, but it didn't stop the shire council having a light hearted dig at NASA for scatter space junk over the town, sending them a $400 fine for littering, which they never paid."
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