Artist's impression of Venus Express Credit: ESA (Image by AOES Medialab)

Venus Express anomaly

On 28 November 2014, the flight control team at ESOC reported lack of contact with Venus Express at the first opportunity for communication with a ground station after execution of the 6th of the pericentre-raising manoeuvres.

Asteroid 2014 KC46 was rediscovered by the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) on 28 and 30 November 2014. At magnitude 26.3, it is one of the faintest Near-Earth Object (NEO) recoveries ever performed.

Found: One of the faintest-ever asteroids

The Large Binocular Telescope (LBT), of which the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF) is a main partner, successfully observed asteroid 2014 KC46 in the nights of 28 and 30 October 2014.

The Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft was launched from Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 23 November 2014 with ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti and her crewmates to the weightless research centre where they will live and work for five months. Credit: ESA/S. Corvaja

Spotting Soyuz in the sky

Coincidentally coming after 23 November, we've heard several reports of objects spotted streaking across the pre-dawn sky over central Europe. An observer in Altena, Westfalen, Germany, witnessed the re-entry of a 'space object' at approx. 04:40 CET...

Venus Express arrives at Venus

Venus Express will raise orbit and keep going

Between 23-30 November, the operations team at ESOC will conduct manoeuvres to raise the pericentre of the Venus Express (VEX) orbit again, in an effort to keep the spacecraft in productive orbit around Venus.

Extract from this week's space weather forecast for the Rosetta mission. Credit: ESA/STCE

Space weather report for Rosetta

The Rosetta space weather report below was extracted from the 7th bulletin issued on Monday, 10 Nov at 14:00 UTC. The next bulletin will be issued today around the same time.

Proba-2 Credit: ESA

Five years in space: 1 satellite – 3 missions

On 2 November, everyone involved with this remarkably useful mission will celebrate its 5th birthday, looking back on 60 months of highly successful technology demonstration and provision of unique solar and space environment monitoring data.

This labyrinth of power, data and propellant lines is found inside the Mercury Transfer Module, the powerful haulage vehicle tasked with transporting ESA’s BepiColombo mission on its 7.5-year journey to the innermost planet. This is the flight model, which was on public display at ESA's ESTEC Open Day, 2 October 2014. The two wrinkled-looking silver spheres are propellant tanks. Credit: ESA–A. Le Floc’h

AOS BepiColombo

We have AOS !! Yesterday afternoon, telemetry signals from the BepiColombo flight model spacecraft were received at ESOC, the mission control centre, for the first time.

SOHO LASCO C3 coronagraph CME 10 Sep 2014 Credit: ESA/NASA

Update: Solar flare and CME 12 September

Update just sent in by ESA's Juha-Pekka Luntama, Head of the Space Weather segment in the Agency's Space Situational Awareness Programme office. The shock from the arrival of the CME (Coronal Mass Ejection) of 10 September was...


Rosetta landing site choices

On 15 September the Rosetta mission will announce the primary and back up landing sites for comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. This video reviews the five shortlisted landing sites, why they were selected and how the comet’s unusual ‘duck’ shape...

SOHO LASCO C2 coronagraph CME 10 Sep 2014 Credit: ESA/NASA

Solar flare 10 September 2014

Update on yesterday's solar flare and associated coronal mass ejection from Juha-Pekka Luntama, responsible for space weather at ESA's Space Situational Awareness Programme office at ESOC, darmstadt, Germany. A strong solar flare (X1.6) took place at 19:45...

Comparison of the shape and size of a bubble formed in weightlessness vs. a supernova. Credit: ESA/P.Kobel

Video: Bubble bubble boil and trouble

Editor's note: this is an extended version of an original article which was published here.  The researchers at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland are trying to create the perfect bubble in weightlessness. By making parabolic flights,...

Credit: Marieke Roth

Comet 67P floating off the coast of Holland

More than just the usual brilliance in this one! Haha @miekeroth heeft komeet #67P neergelegd in het IJsselmeer, bij Lelystad #Rosetta — ESA Nederland (@ESA_nl) August 12, 2014