Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Digest

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

World Digest

Article excerpt

Maneuver may have righted comet lander

The spacecraft that landed on a comet performed two tricky maneuvers Friday, by drilling into the rocky surface and rotating itself to catch more sunlight.

Both operations carried considerable risks, because they could have toppled the probe or pushed it out into the void. But without them the Philae lander that scored a historic first by touching down on a comet Wednesday risked skipping a key scientific experiment and running out of battery life.

Scientists at the European Space Agency said the maneuvers appeared to have worked.

Since landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko some 311 million miles away, the lander has performed a series of tests and sent reams of data, including photos, back to Earth.

But with just two or three days of power in its primary battery, the lander has to rely on solar panels to generate electricity after that.

Material beneath the surface of the comet has remained almost unchanged for 4.5 billion years, making the mining samples a cosmic time capsule that scientists are eager to study.

Doctor with Ebola set to arrive in U.S. * A surgeon working in Sierra Leone has been diagnosed with Ebola and will be flown today to the United States for treatment, officials from Sierra Leone and the United States said.

Dr. Martin Salia was to be taken to Omaha to be treated at the Nebraska Medical Center, Sierra Leone's chief medical officer, Dr. Brima Kargbo, said Friday. Salia reportedly lives in Maryland.

Salia is a general surgeon who had been working at Kissy United Methodist Hospital in the Sierra Leone capital of Freetown. Patients, including mothers who hours earlier had given birth, fled from the hospital after news of the Ebola case emerged, United Methodist News reported.

Salia, 44, is a citizen of Sierra Leone. He lives in Maryland and is a permanent U.S. …

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