The comet lander Philae as seen from the mother space ship Rosetta. Photo ESA

"Joy, relief and slight shock"

"Comet unknown until a few months ago"
5:07 min

There were cheers of joy among scientists in Uppsala as the European Space Agency's Rosetta probe lander Philea touched down on the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, located 500 million kilometres from earth.

It is the first time that a manmade object lands on a comet. The lander has been described as a three-legged object, the size of a washing machine. A team of experts at Uppsala University is involved in the project and have followed the progress of the landing very closely.

After Philea started to communicate from the surface of the comet, just after 5 pm, Swedish Radio's Science department reported of a mixture of "joy, relief and slight shock" among the scientists in Uppsala.

Radio Sweden spoke to Anders Eriksson from the Swedish Institute of Space Physics as the team was still waiting waiting for the craft to touchdown.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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