Scientists chose site for Rosetta probe landing on comet

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Scientists chose site for Rosetta probe landing on comet

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Scientists have pinpointed exactly where they want to land a probe on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko as it moves through space, in their bid to discover more about the origins of planet Earth.

The Rosetta spacecraft has been orbiting the comet since August sending back images of its surface.

Over the weekend, scientists discussed possible landing sites and decided on one called “Site J” which is described as being on the “head” of the comet.

They also determined that the best window for sending the probe will be November 11.

It will be a delicate, finely-timed operation but if the team manage to pull it off, it will be a breakthrough in the ten year-long project.

The plan is for the probe, known as Philae, to drill into the comet’s surface to collect samples. Scientists hope this will tell them more about the role comets played in the development of Earth and the other planets in our solar system.

The Rosetta spacecraft was launched by the European Space Agency (ESA) in 2004 and has been tracking comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on its trip around the sun.