We should steer that comet into a Borg cube.
You may have heard that this morning humanity made history — we successfully landed a spacecraft on the surface of a speeding comet. The Rosetta mission to Comet 67P has been ongoing for the last decade, slingshotting around planets and carefully lining up the craft with the comet, both of which are moving many miles per second. And now, the lander has launched and humanity is on a comet. Though not everything went according to plan, Rosetta’s lander, Philae, has been transmitting data since its landing. Hopefully, we will soon learn enough about the composition of the comet using Philae’s on-board instruments to uncover facts about the formation of the solar system.
The whole mission — no matter if the landing didn’t go as smoothly as hoped — is a resounding success and an incredible feat for a species of hairless ape on some pale blue dot. But even though we are getting back gorgeous views of Comet 67P’s surface, it’s hard to visualize just how big the comet is. Luckily, nerds have stepped in to help.
Here are the nerdiest size comparisons for Comet 67P orbiting the web, starting with the work of high school physics teacher Christopher Becke. Comet 67P could definitely take out a Borg Cube:
But it might not even dent the Death Star:
Although, going with the Star Wars theme, a space worm might find a decent home inside 67P:
Though most of our science fiction starships are tiny by comparison:
Not even Battlestar Galactica is that big:
And any monster, building, or our own spacecraft could easily fit on 67P:
Even The Washington Post couldn’t help itself:
You can see the full (and very informative) infographic from the WaPo here.
Of course, this isn’t the nerdiest size comparison chart known to man (this is), but it’s a great way to use objects burned into our brains by fandom as signposts for thinking about real celestial bodies. For more information on the Rosetta mission, check out today’s Nerdist News!
Know of any more nerdy comparisons? Let me know in the comments below or hit me up in the drift, @Sci_Phile.