Shop Windows to the Universe

Check out the fun Earth science related bumper stickers in our online store! Express yourself!

Rosetta ready to go!
News story originally written on February 26, 2004

The Rosetta spacecraft is all ready to blast off to start its ten-year journey to Comet Chruyumov-Gerasimenko. The spacecraft is mounted atop the Ariane 5 rocket that will send it into space and waiting on the launch pad. High winds at the European Space Agency's (ESA) launch site in Kourou, French Guiana, prevented Rosetta's launch on the night of its first opportunity on February 26, 2004. There are a series of launch opportunities up through March 17th. Rosetta must launch at a precise time of day to send it on course for its rendezvous with the comet. ESA officials say they will try to launch the spacecraft again tonight, weather permitting.

Rosetta was originally scheduled to be launched in January 2003. The launch had to be delayed more than a year because of uncertainties about the safety of the Ariane launch vehicle.

Rosetta is a two-part spacecraft. One section will orbit the comet; the other will land on the surface of the comet's nucleus.

If you want to learn more about comets, check out our interactive comet animation.

Last modified February 25, 2004 by Randy Russell.

Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!

Our online store includes issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist, full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science, as well as books on science education!

Windows to the Universe Community

News

Opportunities

You might also be interested in:

Traveling Nitrogen Classroom Activity Kit

Check out our online store - minerals, fossils, books, activities, jewelry, and household items!...more

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was discovered in 1969 by Klim Churyumov and Svetlana Gerasimenko. The comet orbits the Sun once every 6.57 years. Its orbit brings it closer to the Sun than Mars at the...more

A Rover on the Red Planet! Spirit Will Look at the Geology of Mars

NASA’s rover, named Spirit, has successfully landed and will soon be scouting the surface of Mars for interesting geology! Scientists are interested to know whether the depression where Spirit landed...more

Hubble Servicing Mission Canceled

On January 16, 2004, NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe announced the cancellation of the final scheduled servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The review board studying the Shuttle Columbia...more

Cassini approaches Saturn's Moon Phoebe

The Cassini spacecraft, en route to Saturn, will zoom past Saturn's odd moon Phoebe on June 11, 2004. Cassini will pass within 2,000 km (1,243 miles) of the moon's surface and should send back images with...more

Huygens probe on its way to Titan

NASA's Cassini spacecraft, which is in orbit around Saturn, released the Huygens probe and sent it on its way to Saturn's largest moon, Titan. The probe, pushed away from the Cassini "mothership"...more

Cassini Titan Flyby in October 2004

The robotic Cassini spacecraft flew by Saturn's moon Titan on October 26, 2004. Titan is Saturn's largest moon, and has the thickest atmosphere of any moon in our Solar System. Cassini captured what are...more

Cassini arrives at Saturn

The Cassini spacecraft will arrive at Saturn on June 30, 2004. Cassini's engine will make a critical 96-minute burn starting at 7:36 p.m. Pacific Time (10:36 p.m. EDT) on June 30. The burn will slow Cassini...more

Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA