Farewell, Philae: Historic Comet Lander Is Switched Off Forever | NBC Bay Area
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Farewell, Philae: Historic Comet Lander Is Switched Off Forever

Philae gave humanity its closest look yet at a comet

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    AP, File
    In this Nov. 12, 2014 file photo a model of Rosetta lander Philae stands on a model of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, at the European Space Agency ESA in Darmstadt, Germany. The European Space Agency said in a blog post that the communications system on Rosetta was to be turned off Wednesday, severing Earth's line of communication to the lander.

    After a decade-long mission, Philae, the trailblazing, space-exploring robot that made history when it landed on a speeding comet, bid a final farewell to Earthlings on Wednesday, NBC News reported.

    The European Space Agency said earlier this week in a blog post that it would turn off a communications system on Rosetta, Philae's companion spacecraft, severing Earth's line of communication to the lander.

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    Philae landed on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on November 12, 2014, marking the culmination of a four-billion-mile journey atop the Rosetta spacecraft.

    Philae, which gave humanity its closest look yet at a comet, was launched to look for new insights into how the solar system formed and life began on Earth.