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Rosetta success

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  • Rosetta success

    Congratulations to the ESA for what is probably the most difficult space mission ever achieved!
    Brian (the devil incarnate)

  • #2
    yeah, watching the live stream was exiting. I wonder how much actual work those middle-aged gentlemen in the spotlight today contribute towards the project on a day-to-day basis. I assume a few of them initiated the program and "grew up" with it, but I'd have expected to see a few younger faces around as well.

    anyway, congrats!
    "Perhaps they communicate by changing colour? Like those sea creatures .."
    "Really? I didn't know they did that."
    "Oh yes, red means help!"


    • #3
      Sad to say, only a partial success. The gas thruster that was to keep the lander in position while the pitons and screws attached it to the comet failed. Then the pitons failed to fire. Now this,


      Philae bounced and actually landed twice, nearly bouncing back into space. The ice screws have also not activated and Philae has slipped down a slope but remained upright. Also concern that the solar arrays may not be generating sufficient power, and batteries have a 50 hour charge time without recharging.

      Whilst the landing 'worked' it looks like that all is not going well right now.

      There will be more news later when Rosetta re-establishes contact with Philae as the Rosetta spacecraft has set from Philae's position.
      Dr. Mordrid
      An elephant is a mouse built to government specifications.

      I carry a gun because I can't throw a rock 1,250 fps


      • #4
        Hopefully, things may be better, but it's early days

        In a media briefing, Dr Ulamec said: "What we know is we touched down, we landed at the comet at the time when you all saw us cheering and when it was announced.

        "We had a very clear signal there; we received data from the landing - housekeeping and science data. That's the good news."

        But then Dr Ulamec delivered the "bad news". He said telemetry from the craft suggested it might have drifted off the surface after landing and started to turn.

        This subsequently came to an end, which the German Space Agency official interpreted as a possible "second landing" on Comet 67P.

        In fact, even later data would indicate that the Philae robot may have bounced twice, taking a full two hours to come to a rest.

        The gap between the first and second landings was roughly two hours, and the gap between the second and third landing was less than 10 minutes.

        This bouncing was always a possibility, but had been made more likely by the failure of the harpoons to deploy, and the failure of a thruster intended to push the robot into the surface.

        The mission team must decide if the harpoons can now be commanded to fire without unsteadying the robot still further.

        Pictures taken during the probe's approach showed the comet had a rocky grey surface. Philae touched down very close to the targeted zone on the head of the rubber-duck-shaped comet.

        If the probe remains stable and can be properly secured, it will engage in several months of science experiments on 67P.
        Notwithstanding, I stand by my statement in my first post.
        Brian (the devil incarnate)


        • #5
          XKCD had a flipbook-style animation that followed the landing live.
          This domain may be for sale!

          (you'll have to flip the slides manually)
          All in typical XKCD style.

          But a great achievement. Hopefully the lander is stable enough to do some tests...
          Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die tomorrow. (James Dean)


          • #6

            - Lander bounced twice and thus landed three (3) times.

            - First bounce likely sent lander substantial distance back into space. Bounce height is to be determined. First bounce lasted two hours.

            - Lander likely has come to rest closer to the 'neck' of the comet, due to the comet rotating underneath Philae during the first major bounce.

            - Solar panels are generating electrical power. Electrical levels within expectations.

            - Communications are fully operational. Clear signals being received via Rosetta.

            - Science sequence will have to be reworked.

            - ÇIVA-P imaging device was in auto-mode during the bouncing. Shot many images. All images downloaded to earth. Images show mostly empty space or streaks. This is because of the bounce back into space.

            - Likely ÇIVA-P will be commanded to perform a new sequence upon available communications window today.

            - COSAC, CONCERT, PTOLEMY, ROMAP and ROLIS all got data during and after landing phase. Data was delivered to earth, via Rosetta, in good order.

            - No drilling today. Harpoons failed to either fire or to anchor. Exact nature of failure is not yet fully understood. Without Philae being anchored to surface drilling is out of the question.

            - Rosetta will be commanded to image the comet to help ascertain exact location of Philae on surface.

            - Philae appears to be in.a pit, with a vertical wall <1 meter away.
            Dr. Mordrid
            An elephant is a mouse built to government specifications.

            I carry a gun because I can't throw a rock 1,250 fps