17 Sep 2014 |
World innovation news |
Following the adventures of Rosetta … Where will land Philae?
Do you remember Rosetta? This spacecraft who joined on August 6 the comet? His small robotic laboratory, will be able to set foot on the comet.
September 15, 2014, researchers from the European Space Agency chose the site J for Philae landing on November 11th . Site J is on the “head” of the comet 67P. The landing site was chosen from five candidates at the beginning of September. (See our article, Rosetta: a feat and challenges to come).
Stephan Ulamec, Philae Lander Manager at the DLR German Aerospace Center: “None of the candidate landing sites met all of the operational criteria at the 100% level, but Site J is clearly the best solution.” “the comet is a beautiful but dramatic world – it is scientifically exciting, but its shape makes it operationally challenging,”
Site J Comet offers several advantages: It has a diversified area, relatively flat and plenty of sunlight to power solar panels module. Moreover, “Site J in particular offers us the chance to analyse pristine material, characterise the properties of the nucleus, and study the processes that drive its activity.” Site C located on the body of the comet, was kept as a backup. In the next few weeks, the landing site will be examined in detail and October 15th, confirmed and finalised.
The video below shows a simulation of the landing.
It will take about seven hours from the time Philae separates from the ESA Rosetta mother craft until, Philae will be reach the surface of the comet.
We wish all the best to the ESA team and an excellent preparation for the big day!