APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

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APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by APOD Robot » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:06 am

Image Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P

Explanation: A little spacecraft that was presumed lost has now been found. In 2014, the Philae lander slowly descended from its parent Rosette spacecraft to the nucleus of Comet C67/P Churyumov-Gerasimenko. At the surface, after a harpoon malfunction, the lander bounced softly twice and eventually sent back images from an unknown location. Earlier this month, though, Rosette swooped low enough to spot its cub. The meter-sized Philae is seen on the far right of the main image, with inset images showing both a zoom out and a zoom in. At the end of this month, Rosette itself will be directed to land on 67P, but Rosette's landing will be harder and, although taking unique images and data, will bring the mission to an end.

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by ta152h0 » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:07 am

That is the pits
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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Ann » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:44 am

Archimedes: Eureka! (I have found it!)
Illustration: Kevin Kallaugher.
Rosetta and Philae. Illustration: ESA.
Archimedes: EUREKA!!! (I have found it!)

Rosetta (sic): EUREKA!!! (I have found it!)


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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by bystander » Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:44 am

Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by NoelC » Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:54 am

I think the phrase "dirty snowball" ought to be revised to "gnarly snowball".

-Noel

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Coil_Smoke » Mon Sep 12, 2016 6:52 am

Philae picked a nice shady place to rest in peace. :idea: Could the Rosetta craft reflect enough light off it's solar panels to wake the lander? It is fun to imagine maneuvering the space craft into an orbit that complex and orient it to track the sun's reflection at Philae. Has a stationary orbit ever been achieved during this mission? Is all this impossible because of twisting, tumbling, rotation of Comet 67P ? :?:

heehaw

Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by heehaw » Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:13 am

Great news!

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by RJN » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:14 pm

Thanks to several emailers for pointing out that sometimes "Rosetta" was misspelled in in the initial NASA caption. This has now been corrected. - RJN

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Case » Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:17 pm

Awesome to see the lander finally. Like the proverbial needle in the haystack. You may think a comet is small, until you try to locate something much smaller on it. It does appear sideways tipped over, with one 'leg' in the 'air'. Unfortunate for its science experiments, but at least we found it!

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by FLPhotoCatcher » Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:58 pm

Any word on what the whitish patches are (there is one in the lower-right corner)?

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Jim Armstrong » Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:26 pm

Philae: Call home!

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by SeedsofEarth » Mon Sep 12, 2016 6:39 pm

One of the best APOD pictures yet! Interestingly, the "terrain" appears to be very rough, rubble-strewn, and filled with veins and crevices that suggest some sort of fracturing or layering that is most noticeable in the lower left corner of the picture. What are ESA and NASA scientists saying about this? What do they think this indicates about the comet?

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by chuckster » Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:08 pm

MRO found Beagle II in a much bigger haystack. It is amazing what the flight dynamics people can come up with, even in the relatively tiny gravity field of a comet.

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by BMAONE23 » Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:14 pm

That Big Rock, right in the middle of the image of this rather large Icy Dirtball, appears to indicate layering...Warped Layering

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Catalina » Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:19 pm

Must the mission end with a crash landing? With a low gravitational influence, wouldn't it be possible make calculations in order to land more softly and give the Rosetta a chance to perhaps gather some of the data that the Philae Lander was unable to obtain? After watching lander after lander far exceed expectations of lifespan and missions being extended, I would hope that schedules could be bent a little, envelopes pushed, nominal risks be taken for an already partially failed mission in order to optimize the fact that eyes are already there, right there on the comet!

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Chris Peterson » Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:42 pm

Catalina wrote:Must the mission end with a crash landing? With a low gravitational influence, wouldn't it be possible make calculations in order to land more softly and give the Rosetta a chance to perhaps gather some of the data that the Philae Lander was unable to obtain?
No. In order to maintain contact with Earth, Rosetta orients itself dynamically to keep an antenna pointed this way. The moment it touches the surface that ability is lost, and it's game over. It's not that the landing will necessarily be hard enough to damage the spacecraft, just that there's no way to maintain communication. (Also, there's really no instrumentation on Rosetta that is really designed to be useful on the surface.)
Chris

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Boomer12k » Mon Sep 12, 2016 11:29 pm

"Lonely.....I'm...Mr. Lonely....I have no baahdy....to caaall my owwwwnnnn...."

Glad they found it. 2 billion dollar rescue mission to MOVE it....

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by ta152h0 » Mon Sep 12, 2016 11:51 pm

What could happen if this fissure blows out the lander thru some process and the solar panels are panelling again ?
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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Chris Peterson » Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:05 am

ta152h0 wrote:What could happen if this fissure blows out the lander thru some process and the solar panels are panelling again ?
Without the mothership, it has no way to communicate with Earth.
Chris

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by ta152h0 » Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:53 am

Those pesky motherships
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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by bactame » Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:58 am

Comet 67P is the scariest place i have ever seen. Gives me the creeps every-time i see it. You can't tell up from down and it looks like you would fall off if you took 2 steps.

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by Astronymus » Tue Sep 13, 2016 5:15 am

ta152h0 wrote:Those pesky motherships
Hey, respect your mothership! :wink:
»Only a dead Earth is a good Earth.«

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by geckzilla » Tue Sep 13, 2016 5:15 am

bactame wrote:Comet 67P is the scariest place i have ever seen. Gives me the creeps every-time i see it. You can't tell up from down and it looks like you would fall off if you took 2 steps.
You might make it off in one step if you tried.
Just call me "geck" because "zilla" is like a last name.

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by neufer » Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:58 pm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plastic_flamingo wrote:

<<The plastic pink flamingo designed in 1957 by Don Featherstone for Union Products became an icon of pop culture that won him the Ig Nobel Prize for Art in 1996. Featherstone was the first Ig Nobel Prize winner to appear in person to accept the award; Don and his wife, Nancy, came to almost every Ig Nobel Prize ceremony in succeeding years, where adoring throngs cheered them. Pink flamingos made by Union Products from 1987 (the 30th anniversary) until 2001 can be identified by the signature of Don Featherstone located on the rear underside. These official flamingos were sold in pairs, with one standing upright and the other with its head low to the ground, "feeding". After Featherstone's retirement in 2000, Union Products began producing birds without the signature. The Annals of Improbable Research (bestowers of the Ig Nobel prize) teamed up with the Museum of Bad Art to protest this omission in the form of a boycott.>>
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: Philae Lander Found on Comet 67P (2016 Sep 12)

Post by dlw » Tue Sep 13, 2016 5:24 pm

Where is Philae with respect to where it was intended to land? I know that speculation was that Philae drifted into a dark and vertical face nearby after bouncing. However the terrain shown in today's APOD seems far too rugged to have been the intended landing area.