All the Incredible Things We Learned From Our First Trip to a Comet

The historic Rosetta mission has finally come to an end. Over the past two years, the probe’s many instruments have scanned virtually every nook and cranny of this weirdly shaped rock, unleashing a treasure trove of new information about comets in general, and 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko in particular.When Halley’s Comet paid us a visit back in 1986, the European Space Agency’s Giotto spacecraft was sent to explore the incoming ball of ice and dirt. By the time the mission was over, it became glaringly obvious that if we were ever going to learn anything about comets, we’re going to have to get a bit closer. Like, a lot closer. Read More >>

How Scientists Found the Tiny Philae Lander on a Giant Comet

In the shadow of a cliff on an icy rock 700 million kilometres from Earth, a washing machine-sized robot by the name of Philae has spent the last two years in hibernation. We’d already given up hope of speaking with humanity’s first and only comet lander ever again, and time was running out to catch a final, fleeting glimpse of the beloved craft. In the eleventh hour, science prevailed. Read More >>

The Last, Desperate Attempt to Contact the Philae Lander Has Probably Failed

Philae, the brave little comet lander that captured our hearts last year, has probably fallen silent for good. After a final, desperate effort to contact the spacecraft over the weekend didn’t pan out, the German Aerospace Agency (DLR) reports that the chances of ever speaking to the probe again are slim — and they’re growing slimmer every day. Read More >>

Cool Visualisation Lets You see Philae Bounce and Tumble as it Lands on a Comet

It's been one year since the Philae Lander bounced, spun, and tumbled across the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. To commemorate the historic event, the European Space Agency has released an animated video chronicling the lander’s chaotic landing. Read More >>

We Found the Building Blocks of Life on a Comet

Last week, a slew of scientific papers told the story of comet lander Philae’s bumpy touchdown, comet 67P’s surprisingly fluffy surface, and — most excitingly — the discovery of life’s building blocks there. We haven’t found life. But we may have found part of life’s origin story, buried on this icy rock Read More >>

Rosetta’s Comet is Developing Giant Sinkholes Before Our Eyes

Watch your step, Philae! 67P, the comet we landed a space probe on last fall, is apparently riddled with sinkholes. And as the massive ball of ice and dust hurls itself toward the sun, its surface is continuing to evolve. Read More >>

Stunning Close-Up Comet Photos From Rosetta’s High-Speed Flyby

The Rosetta probe has been consistently blowing our puny little minds with photos beamed back from Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, but these new photos, taken as Rosetta conducted a low-altitude flyby, give a whole new perspective. Read More >>

The Tech Rosetta is Using to Explore a Comet is Hilariously Outdated

Rosetta's journey to intercept a comet took 4 billion miles and 10 years. When it left Earth, there was no iPhone, no YouTube, no GoPro. The camera now beaming back exclusive comet photos? It has 1/1000 of the storage capacity of a modern USB stick. Read More >>

Listen to What it Sounds Like to Land on a Comet

We have sound! The stream of data from Philae, the Rosetta mission's little lander currently hibernating on comet 67, now includes the "thump" it made while touching down. The two-second recording is more scientifically interesting than you might think. Read More >>

Rosetta is Sending Back Intriguing Data on the Origins of Earth’s Water

While we were all worrying about Philae's landing, the spacecraft Rosetta has been patiently circling the comet, doing its own science. And it's just dropped some intriguing results into the big debate over how Earth got its water. Read More >>

Philae Bouncing Off the Comet, Caught in Amazing Rosetta Images

Everyone's favourite comet lander, Philae, was travelling at about 1.6 feet per second as she zoomed towards the formidable chunk of ice and rock known as 67P. That was slow enough that her mothership Rosetta was able to capture the descent in images released today by the ESA. Read More >>

Is Philae’s Comet Actually a Spaceship?!?…No, it’s Just a Comet

As is true with almost any spacefaring mission, conspiracy theorists are eager to deconstruct and point out the LIES! our government space agencies are telling us, and of course, the ESA's recently successful Philae mission is no exception. But I've got to say, this conspiracy tale would make a great book. Read More >>

Rosetta’s Lander is Now Asleep, Waiting for a Brighter Sun

Goodnight, Philae, though not, we hope, goodbye. Before the Rosetta mission's lander ran out of battery life due to a borked landing, scientists scrambled to gather as much comet data as possible. If we're lucky, there's still a small chance of resurrecting Philae. Read More >>