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Summer Shorts: A Cometary Rubber Duck

It’s summer in the northern hemisphere of a small, damp, planet orbiting a middle-aged star in a spiral galaxy of matter enjoying a brief heyday before colliding with another galaxy in some 4 billion orbits of the same small, damp, planet.

July 27, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf
Will We Find Extraterrestrial Life In 2015?

Will We Find Extraterrestrial Life In 2015?

Probably not, but just possibly yes. One of the reasons that the search for life elsewhere in the universe is so exciting is that it would take only one chance discovery, one lucky break, for all the walls to come tumbling down.

December 29, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

Sneaking up on a Sweaty Comet

Over the coming month the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Rosetta mission will fire its main engines no less than eight times to tweak its interplanetary intercept course with Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko; eventually sidling up to the 4 kilometer wide cometary nucleus at about 7.9 meters per second in early August.

June 30, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

That Comet? That's You, 4.5 Billion Years Ago

As the European Space Agency’s Philae lander bounced and settled onto the surface of comet 67P/C-G’s crumbly nucleus it wasn’t just space exploration, it was time travel.

November 13, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

Comet 67P Only Looks Gray, It’s Actually Black

The European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission has now released the first narrow-angle color composite image of Comet 67P – taken through a set of red, green, and blue filters.

December 12, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

Crazy, Wonderful Spacecraft Orbits

Over the years humans have deployed spacecraft into some wild, wacky, and extremely clever orbital configurations to better study the cosmos.

May 26, 2015 — Caleb A. Scharf

The Surreal Task of Landing on a Comet

On November 12th 2014 the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission will eject the small robotic lander Philae on a trajectory that should take it down to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (or 67P/C-P for short).

November 4, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf

Countdown to the Kuiper Belt [Videos]

For the first time two spacecraft will soon make up-close studies of objects from the solar system’s Kuiper Belt, a mysterious region beyond Neptune’s orbit.

October 14, 2014 — Clara Moskowitz

La surrealista tarea de aterrizar en un cometa

El 12 de noviembre del 2014, la misión Rosetta de la Agencia Espacial Europea expulsará el pequeño robot explorador Philae en una trayectoria que deberá llevarlo a la superficie del cometa 67P / Churyumov-Gerasimenko (o 67P / CP).

November 5, 2014 — Caleb A. Scharf