Probe faces difficult landing on comet
Europe's mission to land on a comet was always going to be difficult, but the pictures released this week of the giant ice ball illustrate just how daunting the task will be.
Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is far more irregular in shape than anyone imagined.
It has already been dubbed the "rubber duck" in space.
The latest pictures were acquired by the approaching Rosetta probe from a distance of about 12, 000km (7,500 miles).
Over the course of the next three weeks, the spacecraft hopes to reduce that separation to less than 100km (60 miles).
Video courtesy of ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team
17 Jul 2014