Rosetta Gets a Peek at Comet 67P’s “Underside”

Four-image mosaic of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko acquired on Jan. 16, 2015 (ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0)

Four-image mosaic of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko acquired on Jan. 16, 2015 (ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0)

A particularly dramatic view of comet 67P/C-G due to the angle of solar illumination, this is a mosaic made from four images acquired by Rosetta’s NavCam on January 16, 2015, from a distance of 28.4 km (17.6 miles). The assembled image shows the larger “bottom” lobe of 67P, with a flat region called Imhotep along the left side and, on the lower right, the transition area stretching up to the comet’s smaller “head” lobe. Outgassing jets can be seen as faint streaks at the upper right, and ejected dust grains show up as bright specks above its surface.

Also in this view is one of 67P’s larger boulders, a somewhat pyramid-shaped rock dubbed “Cheops.” Can you spot it?

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© Jason Major for Universe Today, 2015. |
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