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A pioneering robotic spacecraft has shut down after radioing results of its first and probably last batch of scientific experiments from the surface of a comet.

Batteries aboard the European Space Agency's Philae comet lander drained on Saturday, shutting down the washing machine-sized probe after an adventurous and largely unscripted 57-hour mission.

Carried aboard the orbiting Rosetta mothership, Philae floated to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko on Thursday, but failed to deploy anchoring harpoons.

Upon contacting the comet's unexpectedly hard surface, it bounced back up into space twice then came to rest at a still-unknown location about 1 km from its original target.

Photos and other data relayed by Philae show it finally landed against a cliff or crater wall where there was little sunlight to recharge its batteries. Racing against the clock, scientists activated a series of automated experiments, the first to be conducted from the surface of a comet.

Before dying, Philae defied the odds and radioed its science results back to Earth for analysis.

Its last task was to reposition itself so that as the comet soars towards the sun, Philae's batteries may recharge enough for a follow-on mission.

"Perhaps when we are nearer to the sun we might have enough solar illumination to wake up the lander and re-establish communication," spacecraft operations manager Stephan Ulamec said in a statement.

Scientists are particularly interested in learning about the chemical composition of any organic molecules in samples drilled out from the comet's body.

Comets are believed to be pristine remnants from the formation of our solar system some 4.6 billion years ago. They contain rock and ice that have preserved ancient organic molecules like a time capsule and may provide insight into how the planets and life evolved.

Philae's drill descended more than 25 cm on Friday, penetrating the comet's surface.

Rosetta in August became the first spacecraft to put itself into orbit around a comet. It will accompany the comet as it travels towards the sun for at least another 13 months.

Problems have somewhat tempered the celebration of a new step in space exploration.

Philae, the lander that’s currently on comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, may not be able to perform its extended mission, as scientists at the European Space Agency worry its position on the comet won’t let it recharge its batteries. The ESA says it may not be able to contact the craft after Friday night.

Worries over the robotic lander’s power supply prompted engineers to take the risky step of activating its drill, an operation that had been shelved out of fears that it would sap the remaining charge.

“The drill has been active already today. Whether it will actually take samples and will succeed in bringing these samples to ovens… we shall know this evening,” lander manager Stefan Ulamec said in an update Friday.

Ulamec said that Philae has also been instructed to penetrate the comet’s surface with its hammer and to use its X-ray spectrometer. But he also warned that there was a chance the lander might not be able to beam its findings back to researchers.

There is a chance the lander could get more power, either this week or in the coming months. Comet 67P is currently between Mars and Jupiter, and it’s heading toward the sun.

Engineers are considering ways to reorient the lander’s solar panels – or perhaps to use its on-board flywheel to jar it from its spot in the shadow of a cliff – so it could absorb vital energy, run at full power, and take advanced readings from the comet’s surface.

Complicating any such attempt is the fact that while the ESA has received “selfies” from Philae on the comet’s surface, engineers aren’t sure of the lander’s exact location on the comet. Analysts are poring over photos from its parent orbiter, Rosetta, trying to find it.

Those problems have somewhat tempered the celebration of a new step in space exploration, after the lander ended its 10-year journey by landing on a comet more than 300 million miles from Earth Wednesday.

For now, Philae is running on its two batteries, Ulamec said, “plus, the very limited power we get from the solar generator.”

That’s enough of a charge for the lander to send data through its next contact point Friday night, but engineers are worried that Philae won’t have enough power left to communicate reliably Saturday.

The precarious situation stems from a failure of the lander’s harpoons to fire when it first touched down Wednesday. Weighing only about as much as a sheet of paper on the comet due to its low gravity, the lander (which weighs around 200 pounds here on Earth) bounced twice before settling far from its intended landing site.

“It looks a bit bad, but we can always hope,” said Valentina Lommats of the German Space Agency, noting that the lander is in a corner, surrounded by rocks.

“Cross your fingers — or press your thumbs, if you’re German,” she later added.

There is a lingering hope, Ulamec says, that the lander might resume working later, when the comet it’s riding on gets closer to the sun. Comet 67P will reach perihelion, its position closest to the sun, in August of 2015.

If the lander does manage to get more power, the development would be a huge boost for the ESA mission, which had planned to study the comet’s structure, and how it might change as it nears the center of the solar system.

Philae was launched into space back in March of 2004, along with Rosetta. Asked Friday what he wishes the craft had now, Ulamec said, “a larger battery.”
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We Are A space inspired Group we focus on Scientific expansion, Discovery and of course Space related items of interest. The Space Race is especially loved, we focus on our history as man in space.

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:bulletgreen: Public domain works are excepted. As they are historical in nature and do
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William-Black Featured By Owner Edited Nov 14, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

GeneralTate makes comment below, my thoughts on the issue:


I don’t have to admit I blocked paradigm-shifting. I’ve never denied that.

I do not need to apologize, and have no intention of doing so.


When paradigm-shifting offered a link to a youtube video I looked through his gallery instead.


What I found was a rampant and overt hatred for the intellectual thought of others expressed in a cynical manner that I do not particularly care for.


paradigm-shifting is free to express such thought — I am free not to indulge it.


I blocked paradigm-shifting because we hold mutually antagonistic world views.  

There is no wrong in blocking someone when it is obvious that interaction would lead to conflict.


Free-will or self-determination refers to a characteristic of a person that leads them to make choices and decisions based on their own preferences and interests, to determine their own course of action without compulsion. Recognition of free-will is intrinsic to the concept of a free society.


You cannot force or compel anyone to interact with you, nor should you try. In a free society all human relationships are voluntary. Men are free to deal with one another or not, as their own individual judgments, convictions, and interests dictate.


paradigm-shifting is free to not like the fact I blocked him. He’s free to express that as much as he wants, he can post a million comments about it, and he can write a mountain of journals bitching about it if he wants to. I don’t particularly care.


The one thing I take exception to is his seizing my artwork and using it without permission. Because it is my property. I own it. I do not have to allow anyone to use it without permission.


paradigm-shifting didn’t have to “prove” I blocked him, I made it quite clear that I had, and paradigm-shifting did not just screen-cap the conversation showing I blocked him—though I do not care that he did—paradigm-shifting took a screen cap of my profile page and composed an artwork comprised of the screen-capped conversation and my artworks. This infringed seven of my artworks.


When someone copies your artwork and uses it without permission the law defines this as copyright infringement.


deviantArt has an excellent policy page which outlines copyright law, available here: Copyright Policy.


For the definitive law see: Copyright Law of the United States.


When someone copies your artwork and uses it without permission you, as the artist, creator, and owner of the work have the option of filing a DMCA Take Down Notice. Which is exactly what I did. This puts the infringer on notice that his use of your artwork was unauthorized and, in this case, it notifies deviantART that they have a predator in the membership. deviantART will take the infringing work down to avoid liability.


GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting have claimed that their use of my artwork was “criticism” under Copyright Right Act Fair Use Provision Title 17 Chapter 1 Article 107—however the fair use act is not a blank check to infringe the creative works of others, the deviantART  Copyright Policy warns that fair use should only be negotiated with the advisement of an attorney.


There is a reason this warning is there, if you are sued for infringement you will have no choice but to appear in court with legal defense, fees are $350 to $500 per hour, billed monthly, with a retainer, minimum up front $1,000, and be prepared to spend only $10,000 total if it is a quick open-and-shut case. These are the low end fees. Fines and damages if you lose can run into the $100,000 range and at the court’s discretion you can be required to pay the initiating parties legal expenses.


Even if you are not sued it does not mean the artist has ceded his ownership rights – the artist is free to file a DMCA every time their work is infringed with no consequence to his or her self so long as they misrepresent nothing. An artist owns his artwork at the point of creation. As an artist, your rights in regard to your own work are exclusive and you are free to exercise them at your discretion.


An infringer who uses artwork created by others without permission has no recognized ownership rights, and thus no protection.


That is the legal side.


On the public relationship side one has to wonder  what GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting are thinking:


This is an artist site; the largest site for artists on the planet.


Their group depends on artists submitting their art to the group.


Here on their group’s main page GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting have been publicly trumpeting, for weeks on end, that they feel they can and will infringe artists work for trivial and frivolous reasons.


How do you imagine this thread reads to artists who might be considering submitting their art to the group?


One has to wonder if Generaltate and paradigm-shifting have taken leave of their senses.


As for paradigm-shifting: most people understand that when you are blocked it means that individual wants nothing to do with you.


All of paradigm-shifting's issues and actions center around his difficulty with the free-will and self-determination of others, when someone chooses not to interact with him his choice of action is to take a piece of that individuals artwork "hostage" in order to force or compel that individual to interact with him.


In a free society there is no permissible application of force or compulsion. paradigm-shifting, in taking my artworks "hostage" in order to force my attention, is legally, ethically, and morally in the wrong, there really is no question in regards to this fact.

William-Black Featured By Owner Edited Nov 14, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

Why does god need a starship—well that’s really misdirection.


In the course of discussion GeneralTate was free to disagree with me, I had no problem with this, he was free to not follow the links and citation I provided, he was free to not respond, he was free to ignore me if he wanted. I really don’t care. He stated his opinions and I stated mine. See his comments and my responses here and here.


GeneralTate was blocked after he defended paradigm-shifting’s infringements and allowed the infringing works to be posted in the group, despite his own rule against this. GeneralTate blocked me October 5, 2014—the day paradigm-shifting infringed my art.


There was no “cause” at the start of this, there was only a discussion.

GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting decided to make this into an altercation.

Previous to that moment on October 5th I had only made honest comment on three NASA-Headquarters group journals, and had a large number of my artworks in the group galleries. I pulled all of my artwork out of the group the moment GeneralTate defended and cheered paradigm-shifting’s act of infringement and allowed his infringing works to be posted in the group.


paradigm-shifting has only been in NASA-Headquarters group as a co-founder since the beginning of October, he infringed my art the first time on October 5th.


My only issue with GeneralTate is he admittedly participated in and cheered the infringement of my artwork.


Anyone who commented on and is approving of paradigm-shifting’s acts of infringement will find themselves blocked.


Artists who approve of infringement are not individuals I would want faving or commenting on my work.


For those who want to know both sides of this altercation see the following journals:


Infringing Art Posted by NASA-Headquarters Group.


Repeat Performance: It's About The Numbers.


2nd Infringement NASA-Headquarters Group.


As for my own pages I have rules about comments and argument you can read them in my journals:


Orion's Arm Future History FAQ, Entry One.


Orion's Arm Future History FAQ, Entry Two.

paradigm-shifting Featured By Owner Edited Nov 12, 2014  Professional General Artist
He DMCA'd that one, but thats okay. Submitted a counter claim, this will be easy as pie. 
William-Black Featured By Owner Edited Nov 12, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
2nd Infringement NASA-Headquarters Group

11-07-2014: A journal written by paradigm-shifting which infringed my artwork was posted in the NASA-Headquarters group gallery.

The journal promoted a video by paradigm-shifting, who has contrived to use the fact of his initial theft and unauthorized use of my artwork as a point of controversy to hype his youtube videos. The video has been promoted in the group in comments by GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting no less than five times since October. The posting of the journal in the group was announced Nov 7, 2014 2:41:36 pm in comments on NASA-Headquarters Group main page here and in a second announcement  Nov 7, 2014 6:00:08 pm here.

11-12-2014: In response to my DMCA Take Down Notice the infringing journal was removed by deviantART administration at 8:10 am. According to deviantART administration paradigm-shifting was issued a written warning and advised of deviantART copyright policy.

This is the second time paradigm-shifting has infringed artwork to which I hold exclusive copyright and the second time he has been cited by deviantART administration for doing so.

GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting have announced themselves as predators on deviantART, their rational is they can and will infringe your art at-will.

A heads-up to my fellow professional artists who might still have art posted in the group.

For background on paradigm-shifting’s history of predatory activity and his methodology of using a contrived controversy to hype his video’s see my journal Repeat Performance: It's About The Numbers.

For background on these incidents see my journal Infringing Art Posted by NASA-Headquarters Group.
William-Black Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

Just for the record, paradigm-shifting hid my comment’s – see his comment where he says he is doing just that here. I cannot un-hide comments paradigm-shifting hid as a group admin.


That should probably make you wonder what other claims made by GeneralTate and paradigm-shifting are less than true.

GeneralTate Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
William-Black Featured By Owner Edited Nov 7, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
There is no debate.

There are only the facts boys.

Fact: GeneralTate couldn’t tolerate someone with a different point of view, he had no reason beyond his own insecurity to start this conflict, see his comments and my responses here and here.

Perhaps if GeneralTate was a bigger man he might have simply ignored my comments — he was certainly free to do so. Apparently GeneralTate is incapable of such maturity, so he invited in paradigm-shifting long-time bottom feeder and professional troll, who proceeded to infringe my art, and got busted for it.

In fact paradigm-shifting is (apparently) so dim he put up a second version of the infringing piece with my art blacked-out and got himself busted a second time.

These are facts gentlemen.

You have lost every round.

Now: there was a very, very, narrow window where NASA-Headquarters group might have redeemed itself somewhat by doing the right thing, by publicly admitting your wrong-doing and issuing a public apology — this wouldn't garner my respect, but it might have aided somewhat in addressing how the community of professional artist's view the group.

That window has now long-since passed.

The only thing this display accomplishes is confirming that the group admin's are untrustworthy, deceitful, rationalizing scum who have no problem violating the work of anyone, at any time, for any reason.

By the way, I am most pleased to be the foil to help you reveal your loathsome character to any and all who might read this thread.

I'm not trying to convince you of anything. I expect you will keep on lying and rationalizing and carrying on just like you have.

See, this is not a debate my foolish friends, its a trial, and you are not the court or the jury, you are the convicted, and every time you respond you testify against yourselves.
William-Black Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

Nah, it’s really rather straightforward,


paradigm-shifting's been a bottom feeder/professional troll since forever.   

GeneralTate couldn’t tolerate someone with a different point of view, so he invited his buddy art-thief scumbag boy in to stir up shit.


I realize you might be slightly stupid … which is why it's difficult for you to understand that this shit is literally obvious to everyone.


bagera3005 Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Interface Designer
win i was in debate class slander was subtraction of points an grade
William-Black Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

It’s only slander if it’s not true.

See my journal here and my journal here.
bagera3005 Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Interface Designer
insults can still be classed as slander read the laws first
(2 Replies)
bagera3005 Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2014  Professional Interface Designer
or porn better written then mr black
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