VIRTIS measurements of comet 67P/C-G's surface temperature
Temperature maps of the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko generated from data recorded by the VIRTIS instrument. The surface temperature is derived from measurements of the radiation emitted in the spectral range 4.5 to 5.1 microns.
The two maps, on an orthographic projection of the comet's surface and centred on the 0° meridian (left) and the 180° meridian (right), show the temperature for local time between 12h and 14h.
The data were obtained in July and August 2014, when the comet was between 3.6 AU and 3.45 AU from the Sun and the spacecraft was closing in from 14 000 km to less than 100 km from the comet nucleus.
These data are an essential input to the landing site selection process since one of the criteria for choosing a site is that it be neither too hot nor too cold for the Philae lander. The locations of the five candidate landing sites (A, B, C, I, J) for Philae are indicated.
Credit: ESA/Rosetta/VIRTIS/INAF-IAPS/OBS DE PARIS-LESIA/DLR