COBS News archive

Loss of signal confirmation
October 08, 2016
Spacecraft Operations Manager Sylvain Lodiot confirms loss of signal (LOS) and end of Rosetta operations at 13:19 CEST, 30 September 2016, via the voice loop in the Main Control Room at ESA's space operations centre, Darmstadt, Germany.

Mission Complete
October 08, 2016
Mission complete: Rosetta’s journey ends in daring descent to comet

Rosetta’s landing site
October 08, 2016
Here's a sequence of images captured by Rosetta's OSIRIS narrow-angle camera during its descent to the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on 30 September.

Comet landing: Rosetta’s last image
October 08, 2016
This is Rosetta's last image of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, taken shortly before impact, an estimated 20 m above the surface.

Comet landing descent image – 1.2 km
October 08, 2016
Rosetta’s descent continues. Here's an OSIRIS narrow-angle camera Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko captured at 10:14 GMT from an altitude of about 1.2 km on 30 September.

Comet landing descent image – 5.7 km
October 08, 2016
Another striking image of the Ma'at region of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from Rosetta's descent onto the surface of the comet, taken with the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera at 08:21 GMT from an altitude of about 5.7 km.

Comet landing descent image – 5.8 km
October 08, 2016
As Rosetta continues its descent onto the Ma'at region on the small lobe of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera captured this image at 08:18 GMT from an altitude of about 5.8 km.

Comet landing descent image – 8.9 km
October 08, 2016
As Rosetta gets closer and closer to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera captured this beautifully detailed image of the comet surface at 06:53 GMT from an altitude of about 8.9 km.

Comet landing descent images – 11.7 km
October 08, 2016
During Rosetta's final descent, which is currently undergoing, the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera captured this image of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko at 05:25 GMT from an altitude of about 11.7 km.

How to follow Rosetta’s grand finale
September 28, 2016
Rosetta is set to complete its historic mission in a controlled descent to the surface of its comet on 30 September, with the end of mission confirmation predicted to be within 20 minutes of 11:20 GMT (13:20 CEST). Details of how, when and where to follow the key moments online, starting with a review of the mission’s impressive haul of science highlights on 29 September, can be found below

Rosetta in numbers
September 28, 2016
Some impressive numbers from Rosetta's mission. Click for full res!

Astronomers capture best view ever of disintegrating comet
September 26, 2016
Astronomers have captured the sharpest, most detailed observations of a comet breaking apart 67 million miles from Earth, using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The images suggest that the roughly 4.5-billion-year-old comet, named 332P/Ikeya-Murakami, or comet 332P, may be spinning so fast that material is ejected from its surface. The resulting debris is now scattered along a 3,000-mile-long trail, larger than the width of the continental United States.

CometWatch 18 September – a new view of Rosetta’s impact site
September 26, 2016
As the Rosetta mission draws to a close next Friday, 30 September 2016, the CometWatch team here at ESA realised that this will be the last 'regular' entry of this popular feature on the blog (*) through which we have shared a great deal of views of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko taken with Rosetta's navigation camera (NAVCAM) since July 2014, shortly before Rosetta's arrival at the comet.

Summer fireworks on Rosetta’s comet
September 26, 2016
Brief but powerful outbursts seen from Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko during its most active period last year have been traced back to their origins on the surface. In the three months centred around the comet’s closest approach to the Sun, on 13 August 2015, Rosetta’s cameras captured 34 outbursts.

Rosetta’s final orbits – animation
September 23, 2016
This new animation visualises Rosetta's last two months of trajectories around Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

CometWatch – 31 August & 11 September
September 23, 2016
This week's CometWatch entry is a double feature, with two images of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from Rosetta's NAVCAM taken on 31 August and 11 September 2016, when the spacecraft was 8.8 and 9.8 km, respectively, from the centre of the comet nucleus.

Beginning of the end
September 23, 2016
Today's blog post features detailed information on the intense, behind-the-scenes activities during Rosetta's final weeks, courtesy of Sylvain Lodiot, Spacecraft Operations Manager, at ESOC, and Laurence O'Rourke, Rosetta Science Ground Segment – Science Operations Coordinator, at ESAC.

Rosetta’s descent towards region of active pits
September 12, 2016
Squeezing out unique scientific observations until the very end, Rosetta’s thrilling mission will culminate with a descent on 30 September towards a region of active pits on the comet’s ‘head’.

The great pit of Deir el-Medina
September 12, 2016
On 30 September, Rosetta will descend towards a smooth region in Ma’at, on the smaller of the two lobes of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. It will target a region that is home to several active pits measuring over 100 m wide and over 50 m deep, with the hope to get some close-up glimpses of these fascinating features.

Rosetta catches dusty organics
September 09, 2016
Rosetta’s dust-analysing COSIMA (COmetary Secondary Ion Mass Analyser) instrument has made the first unambiguous detection of solid organic matter in the dust particles ejected by Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, in the form of complex carbon-bearing molecules.