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Quick ROSETTA catch-up…

I’ve been so busy drooling over the latest images from Opportunity recently that I’ve kind of neglected the ROSETTA mission to Comet 67P. ROSETTA is still there, swooping and soaring above and around the comet, which is now showing significant activity with glowing jets and plumes and streamers of gas and dust shooting out of it in all directions. And. as they promised us they would, the NAVCAM team continues to regularly release images, some showing wide field views of the comet’s whole nucleus, others showing the comet’s bewildering landscape in stunning close up. Here are a few of the most recent, and my processed versions of them…

Comet_on_14_March_2015_b_NavCam

Comet_on_14_March_2015_b_NavCam b

b

b2f

Today the NAVCAM team released a whole batch of images taken during a recent close fly-by. The images are beautiful, richly-detailed and show the comet’s tortured, bizarre surface on all its glory. You can see all the new images here

One of the most striking images released today is this two frame mosaic of the Imhotep region of the comet…

Comet_on_28_March_2015_NavCam_mosaic(1)

Click on that to enlarge it and lose yourself in all the spikes, towers, pits and layers of the comet’s landscape. As soon as I saw that I knew I had to have a go at processing it – as usual, not with any high pretensions of making it “better”, that would be ridiculous.No, really just to make it more dramatic and jump out of the screen. See what you think anyway…

A2f

I’ve just tried to make it starker, as I’ve said before, more like the images in the “Full Moon” book published all those years ago.

Actually, ROSETTA almost paid a high price for those images. As a frightening post on the ROSETTA blog explains, during the fly-by the probe’s star-tracking navigation instruments were confused by the blizzard of snowballs and particles now surrounding the nucleus, and it became a little disoriented. Read all about it here…

http://blogs.esa.int/rosetta/2015/04/01/rosetta-status-report-close-flyby-navigation-issues/

Phew!

Thanks again to the NAVCAM team for continuing to release their wonderful images, which allows all of us to accompany ROSETTA as she explores and studies this fascinating icy world…!