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After Months of Silence, The ESA’s Philae Lander Calls Home

You never call us anymore, Philae. We were so worried.

Back in January, the ESA’s Philae lander literally went dark, going into hibernation mode to conserve its energy stores. Now, months later, the little lander has woken up as the comet’s orbit passes close to the sun.

While landing on the comet, it bounced into a dark crevice, where its solar panels couldn’t quite get enough exposure to the sun to charge its battery. Before shutting down, though, it was able to send back some information about organic compounds found on the comet. No aliens, however. Alas. Just one little robot and its satellite buddy.

Amusingly, the ESA used Twitter to announce Philae’s awakening. They even had a cute little conversation between… well, themselves.

It’s good to have you back, Philae. Next time don’t go chasing shadowy outcroppings. Please stick to the bright and sunny surfaces you’re used to.

(via Business Insider)

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Jessica Lachenal is a writer who doesn’t talk about herself a lot, so she isn’t quite sure how biographical info panels should work. But here we go anyway. She's the Weekend Editor for The Mary Sue, a Contributing Writer for The Bold Italic (thebolditalic.com), and a Staff Writer for Spinning Platters (spinningplatters.com). She's also been featured in Model View Culture and Frontiers LA magazine, and on Autostraddle. She hopes this has been as awkward for you as it has been for her.