Landing on the moon or Mars? Those big, slow-moving targets are a piece of cake compared to what's scheduled to happen on Wednesday: The European Space Agency's (ESA) Rosetta mission will attempt to place a lander on a speeding comet.
But even if the landing goes awry, a powerful ESA video implies, the mission could still be a valuable step forward in human space exploration.
The image released by the European Space Agency ESA on Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2014 shows an artist rendering by the ATG medialab depicting lander Philae separating from Rosetta mother spaceship and descending to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. European Space Agency said Wednesday that the landing craft separated from Rosetta probe for descent to comet 67P. (AP Photo/ESA, ATG Medialab)
In a promotional video released last month, the ESA plugged the Rosetta mission in a short, elaborate science-fiction tale.
Besides claiming that the Rosetta mission will kick off a futuristic Renaissance, the video, "Ambition," conveys a message of hope and perseverance.
As the main character fails in her first attempt to build a miniature planet despite doing everything right, it's almost as if the ESA is saying the Rosetta mission will be important whether it succeeds or fails — the important thing is that humanity keeps on reaching for the stars.
Watch the short film below:
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