Adventures of European comet lander may not be over

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CNES president Le Gall, French President Hollande and astrophysicist Rocard inspect a scale model of Rosetta lander Philae as they visit the Cite des Sciences at La Villette in Paris

By Irene Klotz REUTERS – Gas jets from inside a comet hosting Europe’s Philae lander may launch the hibernating probe out of its ditch and back into sunlight for a battery recharge, a former mission manager said on Monday. The European Space Agency’s Philae lander wrapped up an unprecedented 57-hour mission on the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko on Saturday. The washing machine-sized spacecraft, which was released by its orbiting Rosetta mother ship on Thursday, ended up in a ditch after bouncing off the comet’s surface. …


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