View Full Version : Discussion: Rosetta Set to Reveal Comet Mysteries

2004-Feb-24, 05:12 PM
SUMMARY: The European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft is all set to begin its 10-year odyssey to meet up with Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The meeting point is at a spot 675 million kilometres from the Sun, when the comet is at the furthest point along its orbit - the comet will barely be active. As the comet approaches the Sun, it will become active; its ices will evaporate, and small chunks will fly off the surface. Throughout the process, Rosetta will get a close-up look at an object that was formed with the beginning of the solar system. If all goes well, Rosetta will lift off on an Ariane 5 booster on February 26.

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

2004-Feb-24, 11:01 PM
An interesting story, Fraser! :D

I agree, comets likely started their journeys in the violent, explosive event that gave birth to the solar system. ;)

But comets lose material near the Sun and probably acquire material when far away from the Sun. :P

Given this cyclic gain and loss of material, how do we interpret the statement that ESA&#39;s Rosetta spacecraft "... will get a close-up look at an object that was formed with the beginning of the solar system." <_<

Is there any realistic estimate how much of this comet has survived intact for the past 4-5 billion years? :blink:

With kind regards,

Oliver :D

2004-Feb-25, 08:36 PM
I think that this story is the best. Will the satallite be able to reach the comet it is moving very fast right?

2004-Feb-26, 12:02 AM
satallite doesn&#39;t move itself, it all depends on how stronger the gravitational pulls I think...

Hmm I have a question about those satellite that actually orbit the Earth right now:
Why is such an orbit not possible even though geosynchrnous satellites can be placed in orbits that allow them to always remain directly above certain other places on Earth?