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This Is Where The Rosetta Spacecraft Is Going To Die

Seventy-one days from now, the Rosetta spacecraft will end its historic mission by crashing onto the surface of its target, Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Mission planners have now selected the spacecraft’s final, mission-ending destination — and it’s a good one.


Why Halley's Comet Has Such A Wacky Orbit

Halley’s Comet pays us a visit every 76 years or so, but its exact arrival date cannot be predicted. A team of European astronomers has finally come up with an explanation for this comet’s erratic behaviour.


The Date Has Been Set For Rosetta's Mission-Ending Crash Into The Comet 

Set yourself a reminder for September 30 — that’s when the Rosetta spacecraft will make a controlled descent and crash on the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. After 12 years in space and nearly two years circling around this dusty, weirdly-shaped comet, this historic mission is finally coming to an end.


Rosetta's Comet Is Even Weirder Than We Thought

If you thought a comet that contains the building blocks of life and creates its own weather couldn’t get any more interesting, think again. Scientists finally have a theory as to why comet 67P — also known as Rosetta’s comet — has two distinct lobes. It’s actually two distinct comets, which break up, orbit one another and smash together again and again for all of cometary eternity. And despite how strange this relationship sounds, it may be a lot more common than we thought.


Hubble Just Caught A Close-Up View Of What Flying Into An Active Comet Looks Like

Comets brush by us all the time, but they’re usually not close enough for us to catch anything more than a glimpse as they streak through the sky. But, thanks to one very close comet, Hubble just got an incredible insider view.


A Mysterious Object From Earth's Distant Past Has Returned

A first-of-its-kind space rock filled with pristine material from the formation of the Earth itself has returned to the inner solar system, after billions of years in the cosmic boondocks. And it could help us piece together our planet’s origin story.


Sugar That Created Life Could Have Come From Interstellar Space

The case that we’re all just highly organised lumps of space sweets keeps getting better. For the first time, scientists have created ribose — the key sugar underlying RNA — in laboratory conditions simulating the cold, radiation-blasted vacuum of outer space.


Something Just Slammed Into Jupiter

Astronomers have captured video evidence of a collision between Jupiter and a small celestial object, likely a comet or asteroid. Though it looks like a small blip of light, the resulting explosion was unusually powerful.


Rosetta's Comet Inspired These Paintings, And The Materials Used To Create Them

Millions of people around the globe were enthralled when the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft successfully landed on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in November 2014. Artist Ekaterina Smirnova was one of them — so much so that she has created an entire series of giant watercolour paintings inspired by the comet.


We Finally Know What's Inside Rosetta's Comet

Scientists have long pondered what lies beneath the surface of comet 67P, but a study out in Nature this week has the answer: dust. Lots and lots of dust. I was hoping for space gremlins, but to planetary scientists this result is almost as exciting.


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