Philae has touched down on comet 67P, making history.
At 3:35 a.m. E.S.T., its mother ship Rosetta, set it free to glide away toward the duck-shaped comet. After seven hours of a gentle descent, pulled downward by the comet’s feeble gravity, it touched down on a flattish area on the comet’s head named Agilkia.
As comets generate a very weak gravitational field—due to their small size—the lander will have to lock itself onto 67P, by means of harpoons and ice screws, attached to its feet.
Sidelight: Since its launch in March, 2004, Rosetta has traveled farther than 67 billion Big Bens, stacked on top of each other.