Comets and Asteroids

In the last couple of years multiple space exploration missions have been conducted which dealt with visiting comets and asteroids. This gallery is dedicated to show some of the amazing close up images gathered by them.

Cliffs on Comet Comet 67P Churyumov-Gerasimenko Comet 67P Churyumov-Gerasimenko as seen on 10 December 2014 by the Rosetta Space Probe

A crop of a navcam image taken by ESA's Rosetta spacecraft taken on 10 December of 2014. A similar image was also featured as the Astronomy Picture of the Day

Comet 67P from just 8 km Distance Comet 67P Churyumov-Gerasimenko as seen on 14 October 2014 by the Rosetta Space Probe from a distance of only 8 km

A section of the smaller of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko’s two lobes as seen through Rosetta’s narrow-angle camera from a distance of about 8 km to the surface on 14 October 2014. The resolution is 15 cm/pixel. (Description copied from the ESA web page)

  • Misson: ESA, Rosetta Spacecraft
  • Image Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA (original Image Link)
Comet 67P flyby from just 8.9 km Distance Comet 67P Churyumov-Gerasimenko as seen on 14 October 2014 by the Rosetta Space Probe from a distance of only 8 km

Original Caption Released with Image: Four-image mosaic of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko comprising images taken on 14 February 2015 during the first dedicated close flyby. This image set was taken at 14:15 GMT from a distance of 8.9 km from the surface. The image scale is 0.76 m/pixel and the mosaic measures 1.35 × 1.37 km.

  • Misson: ESA, Rosetta Spacecraft
  • Image Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NavCam – CC BY-SA IGO 3.0 (original Image Link)
Comet 67P activity – 22 November 2014 Comet activity – 22 November 2014

Original Description: OSIRIS wide-angle camera image acquired on 22 November 2014 from a distance of 30 km from Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The image resolution is 2.8 m/pixel. The nucleus is deliberately overexposed in order to reveal the faint jets of activity.

  • Misson: ESA, Rosetta Spacecraft
  • Image Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA (original Image Link)
Ida and Dactyl in Enhanced Color Ida and Dactyl in Enhanced Color

Original Caption Released with Image: This color picture is made from images taken by the imaging system on the Galileo spacecraft about 14 minutes before its closest approach to asteroid 243 Ida on August 28, 1993. The range from the spacecraft was about 10,500 kilometers (6,500 miles). The images used are from the sequence in which Ida's moon was originally discovered; the moon is visible to the right of the asteroid. (read more)

Asteroid Ryugu

Surface of the Asteroid Ryugu lit up the German/French Lander MASCOT brought to the asteroid on board the japanese space probe Hayabusa2.