The Rosetta Mission 2014
In 2014, the Rosetta mission will intercept a comet and send a lander to its surface — helping us find out more about the origins of the Solar System. The International Rosetta Mission was approved in November 1993 by ESA’s Science Programme Committee as the Planetary Cornerstone Mission in ESA’s long-term space science programme. The mission goal was originally set for a rendezvous with comet 46 P/Wirtanen. After postponement of the original launch a new target was set: comet 67 P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. During its 10 year journey towards the comet, the spacecraft has passed by two asteroids: 2867 Steins (in 2008) and 21 Lutetia (in 2010). The spacecraft entered deep-space hibernation mode in June 2011. It will remain in this state until 20 January 2014 when the hibernation exit sequence will be initiated.