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12-Jul-05 | Deep Impact nails it

In the early morning hours of 04 July 2005, Deep Impact completed its mission by sending its impactor probe on a successful collision course with comet Tempel 1. The spacecraft recorded the spectacular plume generated by the high-speed encounter, and scientists have only begun to analyze the data.

The event apparently also generated intense public interest, as the Deep Impact web site logged 80 million hits in one 24-hour period, a new record for NASA (the previous record-holder was the landing of Mars Rover Spirit with 30 million hits).

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