Skip to comments.How Big is Rosetta’s Comet?
Posted on 07/04/2014 4:47:19 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
...while it's one thing to say that the nucleus of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is about three by five kilometers in diameter, it's quite another to see it in context with more familiar objects. Think about ita comet as tall as Mt Fuji!
At the time of this writing Rosetta is 35 days out on approach to Comet 67P/C-G, at a distance of about 51,000 km (31,700 miles) and closing. Three "big burn" maneuvers have already been performed between May 7 and June 4 to adjust the spacecraft's course toward the incoming comet, and after smaller ones on June 18 and July 2 there are a total of five more to go. See details of Rosetta's burn maneuvers here.
As incredibly sensitive as they are, Rosetta's instrumentswhich were able to detect the water vapor coming from Comet 67P/C-G from a distance of over 360,000 kmhave even sniffed the hydrazine exhaust from its own thruster burns.
Luckily the remaining burns are relatively small compared to the first three, with the final being very brief, so any data contamination by Rosetta's own exhaust shouldn't become an issue once the spacecraft has established orbit in August.
Launched in March 2004, ESA's Rosetta mission will be the first to orbit and land a probe on a comet, observing its composition and behavior as it makes its close approach to the Sun in 2015. Click here to see where Rosetta is right now.
Note: While 3-5 km seems pretty big (especially when stood on end) comet nuclei can be much larger, 10 to 20 km in diameter up to the enormous 40+ km size of Hale-Bopp. As comets go, 67P/C-G is fairly average. (Except that, come August, it will be the only comet with an Earthly spacecraft in tow!)
(Excerpt) Read more at phys.org ...
Thanks Las Vegas Dave, and an extra to APoD. See the keywords for a number of topics in the FRchives.
I must have just awoken from a coma...yesterday it was a stone, today it is a comet. Does anyone else still think that inflation is run amok on planet earth?
Hoping for some good pics.
Thank God they decided to call it “Rosetta’s comet instead of its real name. (Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko)
Quick, somebody tell bpearthwatch that the tiny spacecraft is going to redirect the comet.
I’d love to see that idiot drone through an explanation of how it will do that.
It will always be 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko to me...
Just curious, won’t the outgassing as they approach
the sun dislodge the lander?
It knows you...
LOL! Yes it does!
Would you kindly ram an air filter up your bung?? Do the world a favor...
Hydrazines don’t have bungs!
The only comet that ever amounted to anything.
Never fear... If he can conceive it, he will publish it...
Old addled BP might need a spot of help on this one.
Hey, I wait for all those nutbars on YT to “discover” the “NASA cover-up” for themselves. ;’)
There have been a couple of big-assed naked-eye comets in my lifetime, but it’s been around 20 years since the last one.
I kinda enjoy poking the nutrigrains on YT.
I guess it’s that kid fascination with poking stuff with a stick.
Or making bugs in a jar fight.
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