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Comet nucleus Infrared and Visible Analyzer (CIVA)

NSSDCA ID: 2004-006C-01

Mission Name: Philae
Principal Investigator:Dr. Jean-Pierre Bibring


CIVA (Comet nucleus Infrared and Visible Analyzer) is an integrated set of imaging instruments designed to characterize the landing and sampling site, take 360 degree panoramas as seen from the lander, and image collected samples. It consists of a set of panoramic and stereo cameras, designated CIVA-P, and a microscope camera coupled to an IR spectrometer (CIVA-M) for visible and infrared imaging. The imagers all share a common command and data processing unit.

CIVA-P consists of six cameras: five identical monoscopic imagers and one stereoscopic camera, made up of a pair of mono imagers. The six cameras are mounted on the sides of the lander 60 degrees apart, so they can cover a 360 degree panorama around the lander. Each camera contains an element objective and a 1024 x 1024 frame transfer CCD detector. Repetition of imaging at various times and lander rotations will allow CIVA-P to help characterize the three dimensional surface topography, the albedo of the landing site, and cometary activity and surface changes at small scales.

CIVA-M has two parts, a miniaturized visible light microscope (CIVA-M/V) and a coupled infrared spectrometer (CIVA-M/I) to examine samples collected by the drill, sampling, and distribution system. CIVA-M/V has a resolution of 14 microns. Samples are illuminated sequentially with three LED's of different color. CIVA-M/I will then obtain IR spectral images of the sample with a spatial resolution of 50 microns. The image is taken with a 128 x 128 IR HgCdTe array. Samples are illuminated by a monochromator operating between 1.0 an 4.0 microns at a resolution of 5 nm using a rotating grating. Identification of major organic chemicals in the volatile and refractory components should be possible. The process will take less than five minutes for each sample.

Alternate Names

  • CIVA
  • Philae/CIVA


  • Planetary Science: Small Bodies

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this experiment can be directed to: Dr. David R. Williams



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Dr. Alain SoufflotGeneral ContactInstitut d Astrophysique
Dr. Jean-Pierre BibringPrincipal InvestigatorInstitut d Astrophysique

Selected References

  • Beauvivre, S., et al., The panoramic camera of the Rosetta mission: Performances of prototype 3D microcameras, Adv. Space Res., 24, No. 9, 1105-1114, 1999.
  • Bibring, J.-P., et al., CIVA, Space Sci. Rev., 128, 397-412, doi:10.1007/s11214-006-9135-5, 2007.
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