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Rosetta sees its shadow

Rosetta sees its shadow

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ESA / Rosetta / DLR / MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS / UPD / LAM / IAA / SSO / INTA / UPM / DASP / IDA

Rosetta sees its shadow
Close view of a 228 by 228 meter region on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, as seen by the OSIRIS narrow-angle camera during Rosetta's flyby at 12:39 UT on February 14, 2015. The image was taken six kilometers above the comet’s surface, and the image resolution is just 11 centimeters per pixel. Rosetta’s fuzzy shadow, measuring approximately 20 by 50 metres, is seen at the bottom of the image.

Here a set of NavCam images provide context:

Rosetta sees its shadow: context images

ESA / Rosetta / NavCam; ESA / Rosetta / DLR / MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS / UPD / LAM / IAA / SSO / INTA / UPM / DASP / IDA

Rosetta sees its shadow: context images
The OSIRIS narrow-angle camera image from the 14 February close flyby (bottom left) shown here in context with Navigation Camera images (top left, top right and bottom right).

A visual explanation for the fuzziness of the shadow:

Rosetta's fuzzy shadow

ESA / Rosetta / NavCam / ATG medialab

Rosetta's fuzzy shadow
The difference between how a sharp shadow is generated by a point source (left) and a fuzzy shadow by a diffuse source (right).

Most ESA images can be reused for noncommercial purposes as long as they are properly credited. For more information and other uses, read ESA's copyright notice.

Original image data dated on or about February 14, 2015

Explore related images: Rosetta and Philae, pretty pictures, pics of spacecraft in space, comets, comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko

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