Close-Up With a Comet
After a 10-year journey, the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft has reached the comet 67P/C-G, becoming the first probe to orbit a comet. Philae, the craft’s lander, will explore the icy surface this fall. Planetary scientist Claudia Alexander describes what the lander might find and what the comet can tell us about the origin of the solar system.
Claudia Alexander is a project scientist on the U.S. Rosetta mission at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.