Microblogging site Twitter is proving to be the go-to source for all the latest news about the Philae lander as it makes its descent toward the surface of comet 67P in a first for science.
After confirming the lander’s separation this morning from the Rosetta spacecraft launched just over 10 years ago, the European Space Agency (ESA) has been anxious to learn the latest status of Philae. The lander, as one ESA researcher put it, has been left in the hands of Sir Isaac Newton, as it makes it way to the icy wastelands of the comet, officially known as comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko.
The ESA has given each participant in this grand space adventure their own Twitter handle, starting off with @philae2014, which has been happily tweeting away the latest updates and a selfie, with a friendly personal touch.
Meanwhile, @ESARosetta, the original spacecraft, has been responding with well wishes similar to a parent saying goodbye to a child on their first day of school.
So join Rosetta, Philae and all the major players in one of the most exciting events to have happened in space exploration so far in the 21st century.
Just to remind everybody, Philae is expected to land on the comet’s surface some time around 4pm Irish time to begin collecting data on the comet’s physical composition.