Comet robot rotates towards sun in last-ditch effort for power




The Philae comet-lander made a move to get more sunlight to its solar panels Friday — but it’s not in the clear yet.

As battery life drains on the refrigerator-sized robot, which is hurtling through space on a comet somewhere between Jupiter and Mars, the future of its planned research remained unclear.

On Friday night, Philae was losing power, and fast.

So much hard work.. getting tired… my battery voltage is approaching the limit soon now

— Philae Lander (@Philae2014) November 14, 2014

According to the European Space Agency (ESA), Philae’s main body was successfully rotated, exposing one of the larger solar panels to the meagre sunlight that is falling on one of the smaller ones. The solar generators are not receiving enough sunlight for a recharge in the lander’s current location. Read more…

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