15 incredible photos taken by the Rosetta spacecraft

During the final two months Rosetta traveled 1.2 miles (2km) from the comet and was able to capture detailed images of the surface. This image was taken on Sept., 17 2016, during the craft’s 14th ellipse.

Look for the thin vertical line with a broad top on the left hand edge of this image. (Don’t see it? How about now?) It’s one of the legs of the Philae lander, which was lost soon after touching down in 2014. Rosetta finally located Philae’s final resting place in September 2016.

During the two years that Rosetta flew alongside comet 67P it was bombarded with dust grains coming from the comet’s surface. The streaks in this image are the dust grains passing by Rosetta’s camera and was captured with a 146 second exposure. Studying this beautiful dust will hopefully give scientists a better understanding of how comets develop.

A plume of dust from comet 67P captured on July, 3 2016.

Captured in May 2015 this image was taken the same month that Rosetta first detected organohalogen methyl chloride. It was the first time the substance had been found in space.

Taken during a three week period when Rosetta flew close to the nucleus of the comet searching for xenon. The xenon found on comet 67P closely resembled the mixture that is believed to have been delivered to Earth during the formation of our solar system.

67P captured during Rosetta’s final descent on Sept., 30 2016.

67P photographed 59.5 miles from the comet’s nucleus. Captured Dec., 18, 2015.

This image was taken about half an hour before the Philae spacecraft touched down on the comet’s surface. Captured November 2014.

This image shows that Philae landed safely on the surface of the comet.

Rosetta captures the moon on Nov. 13, 2007, approximately nine hours after its closest approach to Earth. A neutral density filter was used to reduce the sensitivity of the camera on board.

An impact crater detected on the surface of comet 67P. Taken Sept. 2014.

This image documents the diversity of the comet’s active regions. Captured Sept. 20, 2014 from a distance of 16.1 miles.

Captured on Valentine’s Day 2015, Rosetta’s shadow can be seen on the surface of the comet because of the sun, the spacecraft and the comet being perfectly aligned.

Comet captured on March 27, 2016 when Rosetta was 204.4 miles from the nucleus of the comet.


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