From 20-22 June, comet scientists from across Europe and beyond will meet at Schloss Seggau, near Graz, Austria, to discuss the latest results on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, target of the ESA Rosetta mission.
The Europlanet sponsored workshop will bring together astronomers and Rosetta instrument team members, to compare the different views of the comet that can be obtained from telescopes on Earth and via the Rosetta spacecraft. The perspectives are very different – Rosetta studies the nucleus and inner coma of the comet at unprecedented detail from 10 – 100 km distance, while telescopes reveal the large-scale structure of the coma and tails over millions of km.
“There has been a concerted effort by astronomers to observe the comet during the past few years, before and during the time that Rosetta has been operating there,” said Dr Colin Snodgrass of the Open University, who coordinates the ground-based observation campaign. “Rosetta has revealed many surprising details about the comet, and as it approaches the end of its mission it is time to compare with the ground-based observations.”
“The Seggau workshop will allow the Rosetta team and the observing community to exchange ideas about the comet, and to build a more complete picture of how its activity works,” said Dr Günter Kargl of the Space Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Graz.
Comet 67P/C-G’s long dust trail with the Moon for scale
Comet 67P/C-G’s long dust trail, seen with a full moon for scale. Note that the Moon shows the apparent scale on the sky as seen from Earth rather than the physical scale – the Moon would be much smaller at the comet’s distance. Credit: Isaac Newton Group/John Davies/Alan Fitzsimmons/Colin Snodgrass.
Dr. Günter Kargl
Space Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences
+43 316 4120 652
Dr. Colin Snodgrass
The Open University