September 30 will mark the last day for the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Rosetta probe, which will complete its 12-year career. Rosetta was deployed to survey Comet 67P by slowly descending to its surface.
The probe will join its lander Philae before losing all its power on landing. NASA will be broadcasting the probes death with complete analysis and commentary on Friday between 6.15 am and 8 am ET.
Rosetta’s mission started in 2004 and arrived at Comet 67P on August 6, 2014. This is the first probe to meet up with the comet as it hurtled around the Sun.
Since the probe was moving away from the Sun, and Earth, the probe’s solar panels would not be able to sufficiently power the heaters, endangering its survival. Hence the mission directors planned a final rendezvous between the comet and the probe and Rosetta will send its last data to Earth before it shuts off for good. The data will contain a slew of photos and measurements of the comet.
The probe will begin its final approach to the comet at around 7.20 am ET and will begin countdown to land on the comet....