The Cliffs of Churyumov-Gerasimenko: an enhanced and procosessed crop of an image from Rosetta's navcam. Credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM, processing by Stuart Atkinson.

A Stunning Look at the Cliffs of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Article Updated: 23 Dec , 2015

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Images from space don’t get more dramatic than this. Image processing wizard Stuart Atkinson zoomed in on one of the most intriguing views yet of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, highlighting the contrasts of dark and light, smooth and rugged, soft contours and frighteningly vertical cliffs.

The orginal image, below, is a four-image mosaic made from images snapped by Rosetta’s navigation camera, taken from a distance of 20.1 km from the center of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on 10 December. The image resolution is 1.71 m/pixel and the individual 1024 x 1024 frames measure 1.75 km across. The mosaic is slightly cropped and measures 2.9 x 2.6 km.

This four-image mosaic comprises images taken from a distance of 20.1 km from the center of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on  December 10, 2014.  Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM.

This four-image mosaic comprises images taken from a distance of 20.1 km from the center of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on December 10, 2014. Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM.

You can see more about this image on the Rosetta blog. See more of Stu’s great work on his website Cumbrian Sky and on Twitter.

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Pete
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Pete
December 16, 2014 2:53 PM

We have seen now that most of the outgassing from 67P seems to be coming from the neck of the rubber ducky. Now we see the high cliffs over part of that neck. Could it be that all of the material lost by outgassing, to date, came from what was once an area as thick as the rest of the body? – that the outgassing has, over millenia, formed the ducky’s neck?

Paul
Member
Paul
December 16, 2014 10:27 PM

I took one look at the rubber duck & deemed it to have been formed by the “coming together” (collision seems to harsh) of two different objects long ago.

UFOsMOTHER
Member
UFOsMOTHER
December 16, 2014 11:28 PM

Yes Paul I posted the same thought when I first saw it two comets stuck together like two snowballs.

UFOsMOTHER
Member
UFOsMOTHER
December 16, 2014 7:14 PM

It is scary to even imagine something as big as 67P crashing into Earth, It even looks Alien and very unearthly what a fantastic job ESA did to get these shots and to make the incredible landing with the pod even with the bounces it still has a chance to recharge its cells when it gets closer to the Sun cant wait for that……

Pvt.Pantzov
Member
December 16, 2014 10:12 PM

that’s amazing!

Navneeth
Member
Navneeth
December 17, 2014 3:49 AM

Rosetta is the Ansel Adams of outer space.

Ps8
Member
Ps8
December 17, 2014 9:34 AM

“frighteningly vertical cliffs. ”
Perhaps, until you realize that you could easily jump FROM THE BOTTOM to the top, or could simply step off the top and safely and slowly free-fall to the bottom, or could easily leap off the top over to the “ducky’s head”. Low gravity takes all the “fright” out of it, unless the fear comes from the possibility of leaping too hard, and Never Landing. :{

Fantastic view, Rosetta. Kudos!

Jeffrey Boerst
Member
December 17, 2014 12:13 PM

If only Michael Bay could have had access to these images while plotting the sets of Armageddon… lol! (…and yes I know it was an asteroid in the film…)

Plenum
Member
Plenum
December 17, 2014 1:29 PM

What stunning images…! Reading here about jumping off the cliff, made me think of “Wanderers”, which was featured recently for a couple weeks on various space-related websites, and which has future-astronauts doing just that, jumping off the highest cliffs in our solar system – one of the many moons around Uranus, Miranda. Wow… Check it out if you haven’t seen it – it’s an excellent short video:

Really really cool

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