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Rosetta flies past Mars
Posted: Sun, Feb 25, 2007, 3:29 PM ET (2029 GMT)
Rosetta image of Mars during flyby (ESA) ESA's Rosetta spacecraft flew past Mars early Sunday, keeping the spacecraft on course for its eventual rendezvous with a comet. ESA mission controllers confirmed at 9:57 pm EST Saturday (0257 GMT) that Rosetta had successfully completed its flyby of Mars, passing within 250 kilometers of the planet's surface. The flyby was required to keep the spacecraft on course to reach the comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko in 2014. Rosetta, launched in 2004, already performed on flyby of Earth last year and will perform two more in November 2007 and November 2009 before reaching the comet.
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