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comets: September 2020


The ESA Rosetta mission has acquired unprecedented measurements of comet 67/P-Churyumov-Gerasimenko (hereafter 67P) nucleus surface, whose composition, as determined by in situ and remote sensing instruments including VIRTIS (Visible, InfraRed and Thermal Imaging Spectrometer) appears to be made by an assemblage of ices, minerals, and organic material.

Comets likely formed in the outer regions of the protosolar nebula where they incorporated and preserved primitive presolar materials, volatiles resident in the outer disk, and more refractory materials from throughout the disk.