The details on today’s orbit entry

Of the ten orbit correction manoeuvres (OCMs) that began on 7 May, there remains just one to complete: the last one is dubbed ‘CATI’ for ‘Close Approach Trajectory – Insertion’ and will take place today.

Orbit entry will be triggered by a small but crucial thruster firing lasting just 6 min: 26 sec, starting at 09:00 GMT (11:00 CEST). The commands were uploaded during the night of 4 August. The burn will be monitored closely by the Rosetta Flight Control Team at ESOC.

There are more details including a timeline in the main ESA website.

This burn will tip Rosetta into the first leg of a series of three-legged triangular paths about the comet. The legs will be about 100 km long and it will take Rosetta between three and four days to complete each one.

Orbit insertion means that Rosetta will in fact begin following a series of triangular arcs, each about 100-km long, and it will conduct a small thruster burn at each apex to swing onto the next arc and stay near the comet. The height of the arcs above the surface will be steadily lowered, until 67P/C-G’s gravity does capture the spacecraft.

Tracking coverage will be provided  by ESA’s 35m deep-space station at New Norcia, Australia, and the event will be covered in a live webcast via http://www.esa.int/rosetta.

Comments

17 Comments

  • Pete says:

    This is it…finally arrived! What a journey, what an adventure and now? A superb example of co-operation ESA. Congratulations.

  • Go Rosetta! Good luck from the Carolian Astronomy Society

  • Go Rosetta! Good luck from Midlands Spaceflight Society.

  • Herwarth Bernsdorf says:

    I wish you good , good luck for this outstanding experiments!!

  • Carl says:

    How long then until we can confirm the comet’s gravity has “captured” Rosetta?

  • Kenneth says:

    Go Rosetta Go best wishes for a safe rendezvous from N.C. USA we are all watching you make history congrats ESA this is EPIC

  • Guy says:

    Go Rosetta! Coolest mission since 1969!

  • Mark Welton says:

    Congratulations ESA for a brilliant mission! You’ve successfully made it to the comet after 10 years and that is an awesome achievement. This is ground-breaking stuff – you have raised the bar by miles! Very best wishes for the mission to come.

  • Andy says:

    I am just in awe of this acheivement. It is truly inspirational and amazing to watch as we have managed to achieve the impossible and catch up with the comet. Wish I could watch the webcast this morning but sadly I will be working, so I will be eager for updates at lunch-time. GO ROSETTA!

  • Jesper says:

    Happy burn Rosetta !

    We will be watching the event with excitement… at a safe distance in our living-room !

    Jesper and family.

  • Bob Morris says:

    Brilliant! Well done to all at ESA, can’t wait for the landing.

  • Gijs says:

    Bravo!

  • DavidM says:

    Does the comms antenna need to repoint towards earth as the spacecraft steers around its triangular pattern?

  • rphunter says:

    DO you have a Spectroscopy link and chemical composition of the nucleus ? IS there more than one type of “mineral” present?

  • rphunter says:

    Have You Found any Co orbital objects of any Significance [Mass]?

  • Lorand Lukacs jr. says:

    Congratulations ESA for a brilliant mission and as expected arrival and approach to the comet. Strange coinsidence that its name as its shape is twofold. Hopefully it will reveal secreats like the Rosetta (Rashid) stone did after it was found back in 1799 in Egypt, through cooperation between french and english scientists. Look forward to follow and see the next multiple 4 days as each CATI maneuver completes. Well done TEAM. Good luck and professonalism in the future.

  • Kaheynu says:

    Congratulations team! We’ll continue to follow with enthusiasm and wonder as the craft finally lands on the body. Good luck on the completion of the mission.

    -Houston, Texas

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