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European Comet-Chaser to Activate

FILE - Artist view of the Rosetta spacecraft. Rosetta’s lander, Philae, is attached and is shown in blue (© ESA/J. Huart)
The European Space Agency announced that its comet-chasing space probe will "wake up" Monday from a three-year "slumber" and start sending data back to Earth.

After a 10-year journey, the Rosetta space probe will activate and send a message back to Earth. The craft is expected to begin operating at 10:00 UTC, but because it will take several hours to warm up and the message must travel 800 million kilometers to reach Earth, the agency said it expects to receive the message in the early evening.

Rosetta will rendezvous with a comet in the coming months and drop a lander onto its icy surface in November.

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