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Philae landed on its side and in a shady spot but managed to take and broadcast historical images of the ground of a comet nucleus from the surface; Fear of its ability to continue operating when the batteries run out

Philae settled in its final position after being pushed away from the comet and rising to a height of a kilometer above the surface of the comet's nucleus. After hovering for an hour and fifty minutes


The Philae spacecraft sent to Earth a panoramic photograph of the surface of the comet's nucleus. In the upper right part we see a reflection of the sun. Below we see the antenna head of the CONSERT device.
The Philae spacecraft sent to Earth a panoramic photograph of the surface of the comet's nucleus. In the upper right part we see a reflection of the sun. Below we see the antenna head of the CONSERT device.

We may not know exactly where the Philae lander is, but it succeeds despite two space jumps, one of which lasted one hour and fifty minutes, and flipping over on its side during the third landing, nevertheless it transmitted the first images from the ground of comet 67P Churyumov-Gresimenko.

As mentioned, Philae's unplanned maneuver left her leaning on her side with one of her legs facing space. Therefore, when viewing the images, this should be taken into account.

Although it is difficult to know how distant the landscapes in the picture are, at a press conference held today, Jean-Pierre Bibrin, the chief researcher of the CIVA and RIOLIS lander cameras, said that the large and menacing cliff is one meter away from the lander and casts a constant shadow over it.

Philae settled in its final position after being pushed away from the comet and rose to a height of a kilometer above the surface of the comet's nucleus. After hovering for an hour and fifty minutes, she landed a second time only to descend into space again, this time only 3 inches away, near or on a cliff. It is impressive to see that the small spacecraft continues to function despite the trampoline jumps it performed for hours.

Stefan Olmek, Philae lander manager, described how Philae landed for the first time less than 100 meters from the Aglica site (in the red circle). Due to the failure of the anchors and the small rocket engines to fix itself to the ground, it was pushed and shot about a kilometer above the comet. Currently she is in the blue diamond. Photo: ESA

The Philae lander stands vertically on its side with one leg in outer space. Here we see it in relation to the panoramic image taken by the CIVA camera. Photo: ESA
The Philae lander stands vertically on its side with one leg in outer space. Here we see it in relation to the panoramic image taken by the CIVA camera. Photo: ESA

The scientists are still hoping to find a solution to stabilize the lander. Their time is limited because in this location, Philae is only exposed to an hour and a half of sunlight a day instead of the 6-7 hours it should have been exposed to.

Philae must function using the little energy with which it reached the comet - a thousand watt-hours. Since the batteries will weaken, it will be able to produce a maximum of 8 watts of electricity from the solar collectors that will be stored in its battery capable of holding 130 watts per hour.

Bibrin: "We need to do two things, first find where we are on the comet, the Rosetta scientists managed to finish preparing the topographic map and we hope to find with it the route of the area we see in the pictures taken by Philae. :

The rest of the devices do what they need, a Romek device(???) checks the comet's magnetic field. And we have the Hollis camera that can photograph the comet below the landing site. The spacecraft was pushed into space twice and reached a third point, a place not far from the place we chose. Luckily, instead of one site we examined several nearby sites, and the most likely possibility is that Philae jumped from site J (Agilica) where it landed, to site B. The first images from the CONSERT camera showed that we are alive and no longer moving on the comet's surface.

In one of the pictures we saw a large cliff near Philae, and it is in perpetual shadow. Later today we will use the panorama image again. Philae is vertical with one of her legs in the open space. Most of the other devices are also working and collecting scientific data, we need to see if it will be possible to use an excavator to take samples from the comet's soil and test them in the chemical laboratory inside Philae.

Stefan Olmak: Now we know better how we got there, we still don't know exactly where. Yesterday I said that we landed twice and today we know that it is three landings. The first jump lasted one hour and fifty minutes at a speed of 38 centimeters per second. It is a distance of one kilometer. Then there was a small jump of ten minutes to a distance of 30 centimeters. Now we learn what is found in the images of Shiva. Concert's measurements will also allow us to estimate where we are (J, and or B or maybe even in their overlapping area). Last night it was unclear if we would receive signals from the lander again. We received the radio transmission this morning exactly when we were supposed to receive it, and at first there were interruptions in the transmission and then we had a continuous transmission until Rosetta sank from the horizon from Philae's vantage point.


Landing on the comet - special coverage from Darmstadt on the Hidan site

18 תגובות

  1. skeptic,

    1. Again, you did not provide any source. "Across the net", "cross-reading" - a lot of words, but so far only one of us brought evidence to support his words. And nothing will help you - the source I brought, the largest scientific space organization in the world - is reliable. I have no intention of getting between you and NASA if you want to accuse them of lies, deception or fabricating evidence. I am not interested in these claims, unless they are backed by solid evidence.

    2. Who cares where she is on the comet? Again, you are completely missing the point of the mission to continue to stick to conspiracy theories. You don't know if the samples taken are from the depth of the comet ("depth" = 25 cm, which is the length of the drill and the depth to which we planned to drill) or from its outer layer? Ok, NASA claims they have drilled. You want to claim that they are lying based on the fact that "you don't know"...? Okay, just stop selling us your conspiracy theories.

    3. If it is not possible to draw conclusions yet, how do you determine that it is a failure? The goal was to collect observations and she collected them.

    4. I actually skipped physics classes in high school. May I have a private lesson in physics please?

  2. Albanzo

    If you knew how to cross-read information, you would see that NASA's message is a propaganda pamphlet without precise content.

    When reading messages around the web it turns out that:

    There is almost no clear information about the condition of the lander, where it is, whether it is in a horizontal or vertical position, whether the samples were taken from the comet's historically broken shell or a pile of cosmic dust that covers it. It is not clear if they did all the tests or only an initial series of tests (because they ran out of the little electricity that was in the batteries).

    In the absence of data on what they researched and how much they researched, it is impossible to draw conclusions about what they found.

    I hope you didn't screw up in physics lab classes. Because if the investigation conditions are bad the conclusions will be limited or worthless. The situation is that the following experiments, if there are any at all, will not be done under the conditions in which they were supposed to be conducted (the comet is affected by the heat in its environment, there is an emission of gases or vapors from it), therefore the conclusions from them will be partial or wrong.

  3. Well... I provided a link where NASA specifically refers to the fact that they started analyzing information on the materials obtained with the help of the drill. If you prefer to claim - without any source, by the way - that the lander did not drill, that's your right. Also, in my link there is a list of the measuring devices that were successfully activated and successfully transferred to the center in DHA, where they will be analyzed. Maybe in your opinion the goal was to land as straight as possible in a warm and pleasant place and that's why you insist on calling it a failure, as far as I'm concerned (and from the point of view of the scientific community) the goal was to collect data and send it to DHA for analysis. NASA claims it was done. You can email them and argue.

  4. Albanzo

    Landing failed.

    She fell on the ground without control of the landing process (trampoline jumps) and fell on her side (therefore she did not drill into the ground, at most she collected dust or dirt from the pile in which she is immersed).

    The lander did not test the samples it collected, if it collected and it is doubtful that it will in the future. The lander has no electricity, even if it will have some electricity in the future it is not clear if it will be able to do much in the area of ​​testing the samples (when the lander is lying on its side and the ground around it is boiling from the heat of the sun).

    Any failure can be described as a success if the description of the feigned success includes strange words that no one understands. Using strange words for impression is a fraudulent technique that the playwright Moliere wrote plays about (he laughed at priests and doctors who mumbled strange words in Latin when they failed in their duties).

  5. תגובה

    The landing has probably failed, there will be no drilling as the lander is probably lying on its side with its feet in the air (at least some of them). Journalists who claim that the drill has landed are just spreading messages.

    It is possible that the solar panels have an independent movement mechanism (independent of other movement mechanisms), so that the solar panels are turned in the direction of the sun while the comet is moving. If they fail to rotate the panels so that they receive minimal solar radiation the lander will stop functioning when the batteries run out.


    According to this article (as of this morning) the lander was able to drill into the ground and transfer the data back to the control center, I have several questions on the subject and would appreciate answers from those who understand:

    1. How exactly did NASA (according to the aforementioned report) manage to rotate the spacecraft? What mechanical mechanism allows this?

    2. If she landed on her side, how did she manage to drill? After all, the drill was supposed to be in the air...

    3. It was said that the anchors failed to enter the ground, how did she manage to drill without the anchors? Without having something to pin her against the ground?

    4. Remember that a few years ago a spacecraft fired a projectile at a comet, which created a large crater and raised a lot of dust that made it possible to examine the material deep in the ground, what other data can be discovered directly by drilling in the ground, which cannot be discovered with the projectile method?

  7. Eli
    Malfunctions can be reduced to a minimum as much as possible but no more.. You can invest a lot and a lot of money and in the end an unexpected malfunction will occur. Do you have any idea how many failures the Americans had at the beginning of their journey in space exploration. Take for example the SUV that the Chinese recently sent to the moon. Be sure that the most rigorous tests and preparations were made before the launch, and with all of this, a malfunction occurred that paralyzed the vehicle permanently. It's easiest to say they screwed up. I advised you to join one of the engineering teams of the European Space Agency and see how many man-years are invested in each project.

  8. Eli
    This is one of the most fascinating tasks ever performed by man. To fly hundreds of millions of km in space, for 10 years and land on a tiny comet is unbelievable.

    Of course there are commenters who think they are very smart and due to a malfunction in the spaceship (perhaps a collision of a meteor) they will start defaming the group that is carrying out this amazing and important project.

    What would they do without you? 🙂

  9. It's just hard to believe that such things really happen - and not just in theory.

    By the way.. 38 centimeters per second is 2.5 kilometers in fifty hours.
    Or that the time:space ratio changed at this speed (;

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