Rosetta spacecraft's comet landing site revealed

Last updated at 11:35
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How will scientists land the spacecraft?

Scientists at the European Space Agency have announced the comet landing site for the Rosetta spacecraft.

They have chosen what they hope is a smooth area on the smaller of the comets, a spot named "J".

The Rosetta spacecraft has been in orbit around the comet since the beginning of August and the aim is to land on it on November 11 this year.

But picking the right spot has proved pretty tricky.

A - JESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team
Can the probe get into any of these locations without being damaged?

Researchers examined the comet for weeks to find the best location for the landing.

But even the flat surfaces contain potentially hazardous boulders and fractures.

Site JEsa
"J" was chosen from five possible landing sites

There are deep dips and high cliffs on the comet, avoiding all of these dangers will require a good slice of luck as well as careful planning.

PhilaeESA/ATG medialab
Getting it down safely to any location on the comet is going to be a massive challenge

If scientists do manage to land the probe, Rosetta will despatch a smaller robot called Philae to explore and discover more about the comet.

The European Space Agency says the mission will be a one-shot opportunity.