Just so you know, Philae is a lander planning to land on a comet at this moment being landed on by an Earthling Spacecraft, and it is also an island in the Nile.
Before the Rosetta space craft got close, we had no idea what the comet looked like. Now we do. And it looks like Philae!
Well they say the strangest thing of all would be if there were no coincidences - but this sure is a great one! :-D
One of the most remarkable and long lasting missions ever too. Been looking forward to this ever since I read about it and the then proposed Cassini and its companion proposed but later cancelled unfortunately acronymed Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Fly-by mission :
Back in the early 1990's. That's .. yikes .. I didn't mean to make myself feel old here! Sigh.
Still superluminous to see it landing now.
Also, it looks like the Rosetta Stone turned at an angle.
I think this is awesome.
They went from 'OH MY GAWD the end is nigh!!!'
to we are reaching out and touching one!!!
Just sad that we are not out there in person.
Live feed here :
In case it helps folks.
Landed, or really, grabbed on, OK, apparently.
..And its done it! Philae is on its comet with a successful landing. Congratulations to all those who made her - and Rosetta fly - and land. :-)
Now, what will be the effects of both the impact and the added mass on the comet's orbit?
Cool. The early reports were that the harpoons to grab the surface didn't fire - has that changed?
That is bad news. Hadn't heard that.
This was with the story on CNN
Shortly after landing was confirmed, the probe tweeted: "Touchdown! My new address: 67P!" Later, it tweeted again: "I'm on the surface but my harpoons did not fire."
That was also in an update at 11:50 on the NPR feed. I haven't heard any news since. The reports were that it was a soft landing and other than the "harpoons" all was good.
Both the harpoons and the recoil thruster had problems, but "Contact has been made". It also has screws to help hold it in place. (Gravity exists but is very weak on a body as small as a comet.)
Now, what will be the effects of both the impact and the added mass on the comet’s orbit?
You bastards. You've killed us all...
@ ^ Tim : Guessing you're actually not serious here but no, they haven't.
@8. Greg Laden : "what will be the effects of both the impact and the added mass on the comet’s orbit?"
Negligable. The impact was very low speed indeed relatively and the mass of Philae is exceptionally low so basically none. Much less than the cometary jetting which can slightly change its course over time.
D'oh! Italics fail. Only Greg Laden's line from #8 was intended to be italicised. Sigh.