ROSETTA is a mission of European Space Agency
ESA to comet 67P/Churjumov-Gerasimenko.
The space probe consists of two parts: the Orbiter,
that will remain on the orbit around the comet nucleus, and the landing module Philae,
that will land on the surface of the comet nucleus. Historically it will be the first attempt to land on the comet.
From totally 21 scientific devices, eleven are installed on the Orbiter and ten on the Philae.
Detailed imaging and spectroscopy from the Orbiter in microwave, IR, vis-light and UV range will be supported by radar mapping of the nucleus surface and the microscopy imaging of the dust particles. Also analysis of the surrounding neutral gas and plasma will be provided on the orbit.
The lander Philae will provide a panoramatic and microscopic imaging, physical measurements and material analysis on the molecular, elemental and isotopic basis. Additional exploration includes also a nucleus radio-tomography, magnetic, acoustic and dust monitoring.
The ESS unit (Electronic Support System) of the ROSETTA probe
will support the Philae separation from the Orbiter and also will provide bidirectional data-command communication between Philae and Orbiter.
Since limited power and antennas does not allow Philae directly communicate with Earth,
all the communication is retranslated via Orbiter and its ESS unit.
This implies an extraordinary requirements for the unit reliability. The ESS unit was built from top-grade space qualified components and has full dual redundancy based on two identical systems.
The Department of Space physics IEP-SAS has participated on the ESS construction in the frame of scientific-technical cooperation between IEP-SAS and STIL-NUIM, Maynooth, Ireland.