February 24, 2020

Astronomy Video of the Week: Landing on a Comet

Comet 67/P: The view from 9-metres up, with the estimated final orientation of the Philae lander super-imposed.

(Image Credit: ESA/Rosetta/Philae/ROLIS/DLR)

Itís the kind of stick and rudder style approach that would make the most hardened of test pilots proud.

The European Space Agency recently released an amazing animation of the approach of its Philae Lander towards the surface of Comet67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko last November. You can see the alien terrain snap into breathtaking focus from the point of view of the tiny Landerís ROsetta Lander Imaging System (ROLIS). The final images were acquired from just 9 meters (27 feet) above the Agilkia landing site, and show the silhouette marking the final resting place for the lander. [Read more...]