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Europe's Comet Lander Philae Makes 2nd Contact After Waking Up

by The Associated Press /  / Updated 

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The Philae spacecraft has been in touch with Earth from a comet for the second time since waking up, though it delivered less data than on its first contact.

Sylvain Lodiot, spacecraft operations manager for Philae's mother ship Rosetta, said Monday that Philae sent back five packets of data on Sunday night — a day after it broke seven months of silence.

Philae became the first spacecraft to settle on a comet when it touched down on icy 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in November, but managed to send data to Earth only for about 60 hours before its batteries ran out.

Read More: Comet Lander Philae Awakes From Months-Long Hibernation

Scientists' hopes that the probe would wake up as the comet approached the sun, enabling Philae's solar panels to absorb enough light to charge its main battery, were fulfilled over the weekend.

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