The Rosetta spaceship in deep space has awoken and will undertake its missing to catch a speeding comet.
You probably haven't heard of the 'Rosetta' spaceship because for the past 2.
5 years, it's been in deep space hibernation.
But last night its internal alarm went off, instructing the probe to begin a daring mission - to try to catch a speeding comet.
It's a wake-up call in deep space and the start of one of the most daring missions ever undertaken.
WOMAN: It's only 14 seconds until 'Rosetta' will wake up.
At 10:00 this morning, an alarm clock shook the 'Rosetta' craft from its slumber.
It's been in hibernation to conserve power, now it must begin the chase to land on a comet.
This is a fantastic mission, the first in history, trying to rendezvous with a comet.
Trying to land on it.
And in the last 2.
5 years, it was so far from the sun, that we couldn't keep it completely active.
So we had to switch it off, then hope that it survived well.
'Rosetta' was launched 10 years ago and is now close to the orbit of Jupiter.
of more than 24,000 miles per hour.
The plan is to drop a tiny robot onto its surface to gather samples and take pictures.
It's going to provide us with an unprecedented characterisation of a comet.
This is ground-breaking science we are going to do.
That will lead us to a journey back in time to the origins of our solar system.
From that, that will provide us with a better understanding of how the solar system was formed and its subsequent evolution to how we know it today.
It will be some hours before anxious scientists back here are sure that 'Rosetta' is awake.
And many months before contact with the comet is made.
But for now, it's hoped that unlike many of us, the spacecraft won't hear the alarm clock and simply choose to ignore it.