What is the Rosetta Mission?

Shot taken by Philae Lander at just 3km out from the comet.
Shot taken by Philae lander at just 3km out from the comet.

This week on November 12, 2014, the Philae lander made a soft landing on a comet and history was made. But did you know this mission started 10 years ago?

On 6 August 2014, the Rosetta mission achieved a significant milestone by becoming the first mission to rendezvous with a comet. During the coming months, Rosetta will orbit the comet, deploy the Philae lander (in November 2014), and accompany the comet through perihelion (August 2015) until the nominal end of the mission. During its 10 year journey towards comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the spacecraft has passed by two asteroids: 2867 Steins (in 2008) and 21 Lutetia (in 2010). The spacecraft entered deep-space hibernation mode in June 2011, and ‘woke up’ on 20 January 2014. (ESA)

Now the data will be collected. Already photos and tweet updates are streaming.

For more information on this mission go to http://sci.esa.int/rosetta/