VIRTIS (Visible and Infrared Thermal Imaging Spectrometer):
Maps and studies the nature of the solids and the temperature on the surface of the nucleus. Also identifies comet gases, characterises the physical conditions of the coma and helps to identify the best landing sites.
The Orbiter's scientific payload includes 11 experiments, in addition to the Lander. Scientific consortia from institutes across Europe and the United States have provided these state-of-the-art instruments. All of them are located on the side of the spacecraft that will permanently face the comet during the main scientific phase of the mission.