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67P from 6K = O… M… G….

Now this, dear readers, is something very special.

Over the weekend the ROSETTA probe did a close fly-by of comet 67P, and today was the day scheduled to see the release of some of the amazing images taken by the NAVCAM camera during that fly-by. How close did ROSETTA get to the comet? Well, it raced past at a height/distance of just 6km. So, obviously the images were always going to be detailed and exciting and fascinating. But when they appeared online this afternoon I was totally unprepared for just how spectacular they were…

Before you take a look at my enhanced and processed crops of the images, take a moment to look at the *official* images, which are featured on today’s ROSETTA Blog post. Go on, I’ll wait…

(whistles)

See? Told you they were something special…

So can you imagine the look of joy on my face when I saw those images? When I sat back and imagined what I could pull out of them? There is so much detail in those images, so much, it’s bewildering, and scanning them I felt spoiled for choice – craters and cliffs and layers galore. But eventually I settled on a few specific areas, and here they are after being worked on.

c3b

c4

c5

pano1d

pano1e

…and finally my favourite from today, this sweeping panorama showing huge boulders, thousands of scattered rocks, and a cliff-side with countless gateau-like layers…

pano2b

I absolutely *love* that view. You can easily imagine you’re looking down on that landscape from ROSETTA’s back as she flew over it, can’t you?

And don’t forget these are just the *navcams*. The OSIRIS cameras will have taken images too! But I have been told (thanks Dan) that those images haven’t come back yet, so we’ll have to wait a little longer to see what wonders they show. I hope we don’t have to wait months to see them, because they’re bound to be stunning. Until then, no doubt the navcam team’s releases will continue and through their camera’s eyes we will all be able to feel the joy of this mission – the joy of exploration and discovery. Thanks again, navcam team. 🙂