The Rosetta Mission Asks: What Can We Learn From Comets?
Rosetta really excites me 'cuz it's a mission of a whole bunch of firsts
It's the first time that we are living with a comet
It's the first time we're going to be landing on a comet.
Comet CG as we call it was a right fit because this comet was in the right plane, it was coming in at the right angle to the sun.
Comet Churyumov Gerasimenko was named after the two astronomers who discovered it.
The comet changes dramatically between being far away from the sun and getting in close to the sun and watching those changes take place over time are going to be very exciting.
On board the spacecraft are a whole host of instruments some of them require that you're very close to the comet whereas other ones, especially the cameras, prefer that you're far away.
This is going to be the first time ever we see a comet from the inside.
Rosetta is going to provide us with an unprecedented characterization of a comet. That provides us a window to the early phases of the solar system.
I like to think of it as we are essentially doing archaeology of our own solar system.
It may tell us where the origin of the water that we have on earth came from also comets have organics and some of the organics may have been the origin of life on earth and perhaps elsewhere.
We wouldn't be going there if we already knew what was there one of the reason we do this is we hunt for surprises Scientifically that's why we do this
that's why we do-Rosetta is difficult it's gonna give us so much information, so much science.
So we're very excited, data has started to come down from Rosetta and this is the start of our journey.
NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology