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Rosetta probe crashes into its comet

Photo: ESA

 

Europe’s Rosetta probe has ended its mission to Comet 67P by crash-landing on to the icy object’s surface, the BBC reports.

Mission control in Darmstadt, Germany, was able to confirm the impact had occurred when radio contact to the ageing spacecraft was lost abruptly.

The assumption is that the probe would have been damaged beyond use.

In the hours before the planned collision, Rosetta sent back a host of high-resolution pictures and other measurements of the icy dirt-ball.

“I can announce full success of this historic descent of Rosetta towards Comet 67P,” said European Space Agency mission manager Patrick Martin.

“Farewell Rosetta; you’ve done the job. That was space science at its best.”

Scientists expect all the data gathered at 67P in the past two years to keep them busy for decades to come.

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