Congratulations from the IAPM on the successful landing of the Philae probe

Congratulations from the IAPM on the successful landing of the Philae probe 17.11.2014 - The Rosetta spacecraft was launched into space on 2 March 2004. Just over 10 years later, it arrived at its destination, the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (or Chury for short). The culmination of the Rosetta mission was the rough landing of its Philae probe on the comet’s surface, generating - quite rightly in our opinion -extensive media coverage.

This project is probably one of the most complex projects ever attempted by mankind and it is also described as Europe’s most challenging space mission. The project team has had to overcome enormous technical challenges. Hundreds of scientists are involved in the project, the Rosetta spacecraft spent 10 years travelling through space and it has covered an incredible distance of approximately 6.4 billion kilometres. Then, once it arrived at its destination, it faced the next challenge of landing its probe on the surface of a comet that is around 510 million kilometres away from the Earth. Philae, the solar-powered probe, will now send a continuous stream of data back to Earth.

The Rosetta mission is an iconic, role model project with a lifespan of more than 20 years. In fact, it represents project management at its best!

Congratulations to the European Space Agency Team, the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) in Cologne which is the Philae probe control centre, Stephan Ulamec, the Philae Project Manager who spent half his career preparing for this mission, Paolo Ferri, the ESA’s Head of Mission Operations, all the developers, engineers, project managers - in fact everyone who has contributed to the success of a project on this scale.

You can watch an interesting TV report about the mission and landing here:

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