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Main Rosetta burn

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Published on Jun 13, 2014

Rosetta is now closing its target: comet 67P/Churyumov--Gerasimenko and key manoeuvres have been done recently to slow down the spacecraft with the objective to have Rosetta orbiting the comet early August.

Rosetta has successfully completed the first of three main thruster burns. Two further main burns in June (4 and 18), and six smaller burns between now and August, are ensuring that the spacecraft is on target for comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

The first burn took place 500 million kilometres away on 21 May, used 218 kilogrammes of fuel and lasted 7 hours and 16 minutes -- one of the longest thruster burns in ESA's history.

This video shows members of the mission team monitoring the burn in real time at the Rosetta control room at the European Space Operations Centre at Darmstadt in Germany. It also includes the role of the spacecraft's ALICE instrument and how the Rosetta Plasma Consortium, a set of five instruments, is preparing for the release of the Philae lander onto the comet's surface.

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