Philae's descent and science of the surface
This artist's concept of the Rosetta mission's Philae lander on the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is from an animation showing the upcoming deployment of Philae and its subsequent science operations on the surface of the comet. Image credit: ESA
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NASA Television and the agency's website will provide live coverage from 6-8:30 a.m. PST (9-11:30 a.m. EST) of the European Space Agency (ESA) Rosetta mission's scheduled landing of a probe on a comet on Wednesday, Nov. 12.

NASA's live commentary will include excerpts of the ESA coverage and air from 6-7 a.m. PST (9-10 a.m. EST). NASA will continue carrying ESA's commentary from 7-8:30 a.m. PST (10-11:30 a.m. EST). ESA's Philae (fee-LAY) lander is scheduled to touch down on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko at 7:35 a.m. PST (10:35 a.m. EST). A signal confirming landing is expected at approximately 8:02 a.m. PST (11:02 a.m. EST).

After landing, Philae will obtain the first images ever taken from a comet's surface. It also will drill into the surface to study the composition and witness close up how a comet changes as its exposure to the sun varies. Philae can remain active on the surface for approximately two-and-a-half days. Its "mothership" is the Rosetta spacecraft that will remain in orbit around the comet through 2015. The orbiter will continue detailed studies of the comet as it approaches the sun and then moves away. NASA has three of the 16 instruments aboard the orbiter.

Comets are considered primitive building blocks of the solar system that are literally frozen in time. They may have played a part in "seeding" Earth with water and, possibly, the basic ingredients for life.

NASA TV streaming video, downlink and updated scheduling information is at:

The landing coverage will also be streamed live at:

Additional information on the landing is at:

For more information on the U.S. instruments aboard Rosetta, visit:

ESA's live coverage of landing events will be streamed at:

More information about Rosetta is available at:

News Media Contact

DC Agle/Guy Webster
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
818-393-9011 / 354-6278 /

Dwayne Brown
NASA Headquarters, Washington