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Philae probe finds 'organic molecules' on comet

Scientists working on data collected the Philae probe have said that during a drill for a soil sample the Philae probe was able to "sniff" organic molecules.

Earlier, incredible images showed the moment the Philae probe dropped from its satellite and first landed on Comet 67P five days ago.

The high-resolution shots, taken by the Rosetta satellite's narrow-angle camera, capture the 30 minutes since the probe touched down on the comet's surface.

At the moment scientists have lost contact with the probe after its batteries died. It will only wake up if enough sunlight recharges its solar panels.

But the mission is still deemed a success as it is the first spacecraft to ever land on a comet.

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Robot probe plans to land on fast-moving comet

An image showing where the robot probe Philae is due to touch down on a fast-moving comet has been released by the European Space Agency (ESA).

The one square kilometre landing site can be seen close to the top of the image of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko above a boulder-filled depression.

The landing site chosen for Rosetta's robot lander, Philae, can be seen close to the top of the image above a large boulder-filled depression. Credit: European Space Agency

Philae's orbiting mother-ship, Rosetta, took the picture with its navigation camera from a distance of 30.5 kilometres (19 miles) on November 6th.

On Wednesday, Rosetta will release Philae at an altitude of 22.5 kilometres (14 miles) from the comet centre at 8.35am UK time. Both the probe and the comet are travelling at about 40,000 mph.

It will take Philae seven hours to reach the surface. A signal confirming a successful landing is expected to arrive on Earth at around 4pm.

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