ESA title

Organic Comet

Date: Tue, Aug 11, 2015 GMT

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Type: ESA TV Exchange

Format: 16:9

Last week ESA’s Rosetta mission celebrated one year at Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko and this 13 August the Comet will be at perihelion, the point on its 6.5-year orbit that takes it closest to the Sun.

It’s been a long but exciting journey for Rosetta since its launch in 2004, featuring Earth, Mars and two asteroid flybys before arriving at its ultimate destination on 6 August 2014. Over the following months, the mission became the first ever to orbit a comet and the first to soft land a probe – Philae – on its surface.

And now scientific results are coming : complex molecules that could be key building blocks of life, the daily rise and fall of temperature, and an assessment of the surface properties and internal structure of the comet are just some of the highlights of the first scientific analysis of the data returned by Rosetta’s lander Philae last November.

This video includes some of the most recent science findings about the comet including those from the CONSERT, CIVA, ROLIS, PTOLEMY and COSAC instruments. It covers the comet’s high porosity and the detection of multiple organic compounds. Some of these compounds are key ingredients for life and four compounds have never been found before on a comet until now.  

Both A-roll and B-roll contain interview clips from Wlodek Kofman, CONSERT Principal Investigator (English and French); Jean-Pierre Bibring, CIVA Principal Investigator and Principal Investigator for the Philae lander (English and French) and Fred Goesmann, Principal Investigator of COSAC (English and German).

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