CASSINI (Reuters: JOE MARTIN)Cassini spacecraft instruments and instruments aboard the Philae lander on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Russia, are seen in this undated handout photo provided by the European Space Agency (ESA) ESA/CASA.
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More photos Related stories CASSINA, a Russian spacecraft orbiting the sun and carrying the Rosetta mission, is about to enter a crucial period of its mission.
On March 4, 2019, the comet-chasing spacecraft is scheduled to leave its perch in the innermost solar system and fly over the plains of Antarctica to rendezvous with comet 67Ps.
The spacecraft’s descent will take it into a gravitational pull that will accelerate it toward the sun.
At that point, its wheels will start to spin, causing it to spin into a coma and eventually crash into the surface of the sun, which will heat up the craft and eventually kill it.
The comet, named 67P, was discovered in the 1930s by German astronomer Carl Linnaeus.
It orbits the sun once every 4.5 Earth years.
On March 4th, it will reach its closest approach to Earth.
Its orbit is highly elliptical and the spacecraft will pass within 5 million kilometers (3 million miles) of the planet every 12 hours.
The spacecraft has spent a total of 11 days orbiting the planet, making it the longest continuously orbiting spacecraft in history.
It is about 50 million kilometers from the sun in the constellation of Cancer, the brightest star in the sky.
The comet’s orbit is more than 100 million kilometers distant, or nearly 1,000 times further away than Earth’s moon.
It will be the third spacecraft to orbit the sun since 1957.
When it arrives at the sun’s surface, it’ll be nearly 1 million kilometers long, roughly the diameter of Texas.
It’ll be almost 1.5 billion kilometers (1.3 billion miles) across.
Its surface is covered in ice and dust.
The Philae spacecraft will be launched into space on March 19.
Rosetta is about 100 kilometers (62 miles) away and is being prepared for its first science mission.
Rosettas landing was a success.
It landed safely in a shallow crater on the surface, in what was described as “one of the most dramatic landings in space history.”
Rosetta, which is operated by a consortium of European, Italian and American scientists, is being led by a team of four scientists and engineers led by Jörg Cassini.
It was built by the Italian Space Agency.
A team of about 50 scientists and experts is building a small telescope that will study the comet’s surface.
The telescope will be placed on a launch pad in the town of Vigo in Italy.
Rosetta will arrive at the comet after a week.
It needs to get as close as possible to the surface to capture images.
It must stay close to the comet for about three months before returning to the ground to continue its research.
Rosettas descent was a big success, but it took about five months for the comet to hit the sun from a distance of about 10,000 kilometers (6,600 miles).
The comet is now at an altitude of 1.8 million kilometers.
Comet 67P is the largest object in the solar system.
It lies at the center of the solar nebula, the dense, cloud-like cloud of gas and dust surrounding the sun that contains billions of suns.
The diameter of the comet is about 3.5 times that of the Earth.
Rosette is a member of the Philia family of spacecraft.
It also has two other spacecraft that are headed toward the Sun: the Rosette Mars rover, a lander that will descend to the planet’s surface and study the planet and its environment; and the Rosettes comet-monitoring orbiter, which would monitor and study comet 67PP.
Cassini’s first landing on the comet occurred in 2014.
“When we first landed, we had a feeling that we were going to make it,” Rosetta project scientist Andreas Schiller said in an interview with NASA.
“But when we got to the place where we were supposed to, it felt really hard.”
“We didn’t know how close to land we were, and we were so nervous that we weren’t prepared,” Schiller added.
During the landing, the craft used an onboard radar and other instruments to look for any signs of debris or gases, but