According to a report from Japanâ€™s Kyodo News Agency on January 24, a team composed of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan and Kyoto University of Technology announced on the 24th that the worldâ€™s smallest detector â€œPROCYONâ€ launched in 2014 successfully measured and measured comets. The amount of water vapor it releases. It is reported that it is the first time in the world that an ultra-small detector with a weight of 100 kg or less has achieved this result.
The detector "PROCYON" is a box-shaped detector with a side length of about 60 cm developed by the University of Tokyo and the like and weighs about 65 kg. In December 2014, it was launched by the H2A rocket along with the asteroid probe "Earth 2".
The initial goal of PROCYON was to reach the asteroid, but it was abandoned due to the halt of the main propulsion system in March 2015. Instead, the mission was to observe the overall situation of hydrogen on the comet of Chuliumov-Gerasimenko with a telescope at a distance of 270 million kilometers from the Earth 35 million kilometers from September of that year. The results of the data analysis show that the comet releases 300 kilograms of water vapor per second.
The European Space Agency's probe, Rosetta, approached the comet in 2014-2016 and conducted a detailed exploration. The Rosetta observed the same amount of release as "PROCYON." New Shin Sung-ching, a special guest researcher at the National Astronomical Observatory, said: "We have successfully verified the Rosetta observations with low-cost ultra-small detectors."
(Original title: Japan's global minimum detector successfully observed comets)