Here are just a few of the developments and findings:
- Engineers were able to recreate Philae’s initial landing, bounces, and final landing. And it’s kind-of terrifying. [VIDEO]
- As Comet 67/P entered the inner Solar System, Rosetta observed and tracked debris particles coming from the comet via the spacecraft’s Grain Impact Analyzer and Dust Accumulator (GIADA) instrument.
- Measurements by both Rosetta and Philae found no evidence of a magnetic field on the comet.
- Rosetta accompanied Comet 67/P as it made its closest approach to the Sun over the summer.
- Data from Rosetta’s Visible, InfraRed and Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS) revealed a daily water-ice cycle on the surface of the comet.
- Mission scientists were able to determine that the comet got it’s “rubber duck” shape from the collision of two smaller cometary bodies.
- Rosetta is the first mission to detect molecular oxygen outgassing from a comet.
- ESA has created a stunning photo gallery of images from Rosetta on Flickr.
For the tl;dr version of all these updates, you can watch this summary video from ESA.
Or alternatively you can enjoy the latest chapter of ESA’s brilliant “Once Upon a Time” animated story of this plucky mission.
I can’t wait to see what happens next!
Here’s some more geek from the week.
- First, there is a animal called the pink fairy armadillo. Second, this video of one digging in the sand is ADORABLE.
- These mollusks make THOUSANDS OF EYES from their shells. [VIDEO]
- Pigeons get a bad rap. Turns out they can be trained to be really good at reading mammograms.
- This comic drives home the point that DNA is NOT source code.
- Scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have grown functioning vocal cords in the lab for the first time ever.
- Ever wondered why people talk so funny in old movies? It’s because they were taught the Transatlantic accent. [VIDEO]
- Archaeologists in Wisconsin discovered 800 year old seed for an ancient, extinct squash and successfully GREW ONE. [VIDEO]
- Tidal ponds form in fractal patterns in coastal wetlands.
- The National Air and Space Museum is crowdsourcing the transcription of the Apollo mission stowage lists.
- Scientists at Penn State have created diamond nanothreads that other scientists at Queensland University of Technology think could be used to further space exploration.
- Film geeks: here’s a fascinating explainer of how many of the effects in The Martian were done. [VIDEO]
Keep on geeking!
@Summer_Ash, In-house Astrophysicist