Time variability and heterogeneity in the coma of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Hässig, Myrtha; Altwegg, Kathrin; Balsiger, Hans; Bar-Nun, A.; Berthelier, J. J.; Bieler, André; Bochsler, Peter; Briois, C.; Calmonte, Ursina Maria; Combi, M.; De Keyser, J.; Eberhardt, Peter; Fiethe, B.; Fuselier, S. A.; Galand, M.; Gasc, Sébastien; Gombosi, T. I.; Hansen, K. C.; Jäckel, Annette; Keller, H. U.; ... (2015). Time variability and heterogeneity in the coma of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Science, 347(6220), aaa0276-aaa0276. American Association for the Advancement of Science 10.1126/science.aaa0276

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Comets contain the best-preserved material from the beginning of our planetary system. Their nuclei and comae composition reveal clues about physical and chemical conditions during the early solar system when comets formed. ROSINA (Rosetta Orbiter Spectrometer for Ion and Neutral Analysis) onboard the Rosetta spacecraft has measured the coma composition of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko with well-sampled time resolution per rotation. Measurements were made over many comet rotation periods and a wide range of latitudes. These measurements show large fluctuations in composition in a heterogeneous coma that has diurnal and possibly seasonal variations in the major outgassing species: water, carbon monoxide, and carbon dioxide. These results indicate a complex coma-nucleus relationship where seasonal variations may be driven by temperature differences just below the comet surface.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute
08 Faculty of Science > Other Institutions > Emeriti, Faculty of Science

UniBE Contributor:

Hässig, Myrtha, Altwegg, Kathrin, Balsiger, Hans, Bieler, André, Bochsler, Peter, Calmonte, Ursina Maria, Eberhardt, Peter, Gasc, Sébastien, Jäckel, Annette, Kopp, Ernest, Le Roy, Léna, Rubin, Martin, Sémon, Thierry, Tzou, Chia-Yu, Wurz, Peter


500 Science > 520 Astronomy
600 Technology > 620 Engineering
500 Science > 530 Physics




American Association for the Advancement of Science




Martin Rubin

Date Deposited:

10 Jun 2016 14:44

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:50

Publisher DOI:






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