Author Archives: Daniel

Daniel Scuka is Senior Editor for Spacecraft Operations at ESOC, ESA's European Space Operations Centre, Darmstadt, Germany.
Rosetta phone Credit: ESA

Rosetta’s deep-space ringtone

One of the responsibilities of the engineers on any mission's Flight Control Team is to monitor the spacecraft and react immediately in case of trouble.

Spacecraft Operations Manager Sylvain Lodiot (standing, near middle of image) oversees the final hours of Rosetta operations in the Main Control Room at ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany, 30 September 2016. Image: ESA/R. Palmari

Loss of signal confirmation

Spacecraft Operations Manager Sylvain Lodiot confirms loss of signal (LOS) and end of Rosetta operations at 13:19 CEST, 30 September 2016, via the voice loop in the Main Control Room at ESA’s space operations centre, Darmstadt, Germany.

Rosetta's radio signal starts to fade... Credit: ESA

Last call from Rosetta

Going… going… gone! A sequence of screenshots showing the signal from Rosetta seen at ESA’s ESOC mission control centre via NASA’s 70m tracking station at Madrid during comet landing on 30 September 2016. The peak of the...

Visualisation screens in the Flight Dynamics control room at ESOC. Credit: ESA

Flight dynamics team at ESOC

Throughout the entire Rosetta mission, the Flight Dynamics team at ESOC have been some of the hardest-working, behind-the-scenes wizards ensuring navigation – and today is no exception. They also have some of the coolest visualization tools in...


Live from Rosetta mission control

Live Twitter Periscope visit to the Rosetta mission control team on console in the Main Control Room at ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany, for today’s #CometLanding. Hosted by Daniel Scuka, from the ESA web team. LIVE on #Periscope: Live...

Rosetta at the comet. Credit - Spacecraft: ESA/ATG medialab; Comet image: ESA/Rosetta/Navcam

How Rosetta gets passivated

Since Rosetta wasn't designed to have its transmitter permanently off, we had to change the on-board software by patching it.

Spacecraft Operations Engineer Armelle Hubault, Rosetta Flight Control Tea, ESA/ESOC. Credit: ESA

Real life trumps animation

An ‘insider tale’ from the Flight Control team, who are already reminiscing about their favourite moments from Rosetta’s epic journey.

Rosetta's 2014 selfie from a distance of about 16 km from the surface of 67P/C-G. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

Beginning of the end

Today's blog post features detailed information on the intense, behind-the-scenes activities during Rosetta's final weeks.

Transmitting to the experts back home Credit: ESA

How we heard from Philae

I picked up the phone and said: 'This has to be bad news. We've got a safe mode, don't we?' He replied, 'Well, maybe not. Maybe it's good news!'

Year-end break

A short note from the blog team here at ESA: we expect to take a year-end break between Monday, 22 December 2014 and Monday, 5 January 2015.

What’s up with Rosetta

Contrary to the pre-landing phase, where the trajectories flown were designed with the lander delivery always in mind, we have now entered the science phase of the mission.

Reddit AMA 20 Nov 19:00CET start

Engineers from Rosetta mission control at ESOC, Germany, the Rosetta Science Operations Centre at ESAC, Spain, and the Lander Control Centre, Cologne, will take part in a reddit AMA (Ask me Anything!) on Thursday, 20 November 19:00CET...