space news from around the webin association with SpaceNews

Rosetta comet has double nucleus
Posted: Fri, Jul 18, 2014, 8:38 AM ET (1238 GMT)
Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko nucleus seen by Rosetta, July 2014 (ESA et al.) The comet that is the target of a European mission appears to have a nucleus comprised of two bodies, not one, which could complicate plans to land a spacecraft on the comet. Images released this week from ESA's Rosetta spacecraft show that the nucleus of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko appears to be a contact binary: two distinct bodies touching each other, vaguely resembling a rubber duck. How the nucleus got that shape isn't clear yet to planetary scientists. The comet is the destination of Rosetta, launched by ESA in 2004 on a convoluted trajectory that required three Earth gravity assists and one Mars gravity assist to reach the comet. Rosetta will rendezvous with the comet next month, and is planned to deploy a small lander, Philae, to the surface of the nucleus in November. The nucleus's unusual shape could make that landing more difficult.
<<previous article   next article>>
news in brief
Intelsat finalizes C-band satellite orders and launches
Posted: Sun, Sep 20 10:01 AM ET (1401 GMT)

Northrop Grumman wins military satellite contract
Posted: Sun, Sep 20 9:56 AM ET (1356 GMT)

OHB signs contracts for ESA planetary defense mission
Posted: Sun, Sep 20 9:53 AM ET (1353 GMT)

news links
Tuesday, October 27
The five biggest effects Trump has had on the US space program
Technology Review — 6:28 am ET (1028 GMT)

about   ·   ·   mailing list