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Here’s The “Sound” ESA’s Philae Probe Made When It Landed on a Comet


In space, no one can hear you scream. But if you were going to land on a comet while equipped with special acoustic sensors,  they would definitely be able to hear that. It would probably sound a little something like this.

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At least, that’s what happened with the “Cometary Acoustic Surface Sounding Experiment” (CASSE) sensors on the legs of ESA’s Philae Lander. These instruments were able to detect and record the vibrations made when the lander touched down on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko last week, and now scientists from the German Aerospace Center (DLR) have uploaded the audio onto Soundcloud for everyone to listen—and hopefully make lots of remixes with, just like they’re doing with the oscillations of the comet itself.

These vibrations aren’t just for listening to, however: They’re also helping scientists to learn more about the comet’s surface. From this data, they were able to determine that “[t]he Philae lander came into contact with a soft layer several centimetres thick. Then, just milliseconds later, the feet encountered a hard, perhaps icy layer on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko,” according to project scientist Klaus Seidensticker in a statement from the DLR. They also found further evidence supporting the claim that the lander bounced twice on initial impact, but you can only hear the first touchdown in the above recording.

The result is a kind of crunchy, bloopy noise that sounds… well, surprisingly adorable. You know what it kind of reminds me of?


Science boop!

(via The Washington Post)

Previously in ESA

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