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Rosetta spacecraft's comet develops dusty envelope

Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko (center), is starting to grow a dust envelope, which extends over 1,300 kilometers from its core, according to images taken by a camera aboard the Rosetta spacecraft. The globular cluster M107 appears in the upper left.

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Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the target of ESA’s Rosetta mission, is getting dusty. New images show a hazy envelope, or dust coma, developing around the comet’s core. The comet makes one full rotation in 12.4 hours, 20 minutes shorter than astronomers previously thought.

The new data will be factored into Rosetta's rendezvous with the comet, which is slated for August 2014.

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