On Friday, asteroid 2014-YB35 is expected to make its closest approach to Earth. Traveling at over 23,000 mph (37,000 km/h), NASA says the 6.2 mile (1,000 meter) asteroid won't get any closer than 2.7-million miles (4.4 million km). That's nearly 12 times the distance from Earth to the Moon – so relax. » 3/26/15 2:40pm Thursday 2:40pm

Aussie Scientists Say This Is The Largest Asteroid Impact Area On Earth

Measuring 250 miles (400 km) wide, the now-buried crater in Australia was ground zero for a cataclysmic impact that occurred some 300 million years ago. But is it really the largest on Earth? » 3/24/15 9:40am 3/24/15 9:40am

A Dangerous Nemesis Star May Visit Our Solar System Many Years From Now

A stellar orange dwarf has a 90% chance of passing through the outer reaches of our solar system no earlier than a quarter of a million years from now. Sure, that's a long way off, but this unwelcome guest could perturb the Oort cloud, flinging dangerous comets towards Earth. » 12/30/14 9:20am 12/30/14 9:20am

This Ancient Asteroid Strike Was More Insane Than We Realized

Around 3.26 billion years ago — long before the dinosaurs — a massive asteroid measuring nearly 36 miles (58 km) across smashed into the Earth. Geologists have now reconstructed this cataclysmic event, and it was far, far bigger than we thought. Here's how things went down on that fateful day. » 4/10/14 12:00pm 4/10/14 12:00pm

NASA turns to an old-fashioned technology in the hunt for asteroids

Behold the peanut-shaped Asteroid 2006 DP14, a 1,300-foot (400-meter) long object that recently flew past Earth. The asteroid was scanned with Doppler radar — a tried-and-true technology that's helping astronomers pinpoint potentially dangerous near-Earth objects. » 2/26/14 8:35am 2/26/14 8:35am

The mammoth asteroid set to fly by Earth last night just disappeared

Last night, a giant asteroid was supposed to streak by the Earth, close enough for us to catch a glimpse as it zipped by. Except it never showed, and now astronomers say they have no idea just where the 900-foot asteroid has gone. » 2/18/14 3:40pm 2/18/14 3:40pm

Astronomers discover a massive asteroid that could hit us in 2032

Mark August 26th, 2032 on your calendar, folks. Ukrainian astronomers have just detected a 1,350-foot-wide (410 meter) minor planet that’s headed our way. The impact risk is minimal, but it’s now the most serious near-term celestial threat to face our planet. » 10/17/13 9:00am 10/17/13 9:00am

Concept animation of NASA's proposed Asteroid Redirect Mission

If a near-Earth object happened to come hurtling dangerously close to Earth, the manned mission to gather samples from the captured object might look something like this. » 8/24/13 5:00pm 8/24/13 5:00pm

The orbits of all potentially hazardous asteroids in one map

NASA has put together an image showing the orbits of all known Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (PHAs) currently threatening Earth. That's 1,400 in total — making this map uncomfortably busy. » 8/12/13 2:54pm 8/12/13 2:54pm

Bill Nye explains how to stop an asteroid

Bill Nye teamed up with Mitchell Moffit and Gregory Brown of AsapSCIENCE to address one of the most pressing not-if-but-when questions in recent memory: how do we stop a major asteroid from colliding with Earth? » 7/24/13 7:20am 7/24/13 7:20am

What's the difference between a comet, asteroid, meteor, meteoroid and…

With all the recent buzz over asteroid AD14, the meteor over Chelyabinsk, the fragments of meteorite recovered in Russia's Ural mountains, and yesterday's news that the fireball originated from our solar system's asteroid belt, one can't help but wonder: what's the difference between all these -oids, -ors and -ites?… » 2/27/13 12:40pm 2/27/13 12:40pm

Watch Asteroid 2012 DA14's close encounter with Earth — live on io9!

Now that everyone's nerves are on edge following the break up of a small asteroid over Chelyabinsk, Russia this morning, we now turn our frayed attention to Asteroid 2012 DA14. NASA is scheduled to start its audio commentary at 11:00 AM PST (2:00 PM EST). The live broadcast will integrate real-time animation to… » 2/15/13 10:38am 2/15/13 10:38am

Meteorite Explodes Over Russia, Hundreds Injured

Over a hundred people are injured after a meteor or meteors reportedly exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia this morning. Although there are no confirmed deaths, the full extent of the situation is still being assessed. » 2/15/13 1:16am 2/15/13 1:16am

Everything You Need to Know About Earth's Close Shave With an Asteroid

On February 15, asteroid 2012 DA14 is scheduled to pay us a visit. The 150 foot (45 meter) rock has no chance of hitting us — but it'll be the closest approach that's ever been observed by astronomers. » 2/14/13 12:00pm 2/14/13 12:00pm

NASA captures ominous video of the three-mile-long asteroid that buzzed…

On December 12, the three-mile-long (4.8 km) asteroid Toutatis came within 4.3 million miles (6.9 million km) of Earth — which is about 18 lunar distances. During the flyby, NASA used its 230-foot-wide (70-meter) Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, California, to generate a series of radar data images — which… » 12/17/12 6:30am 12/17/12 6:30am

How to Deflect an Asteroid Attack

A 15 kilometer wide asteroid is headed toward the Earth, but NASA scientists spot it three years before impact. Movie lore not withstanding, what the hell are we supposed to do? Could we even organize the global community enough to stop this flaming ball that astronomers call a near-Earth object (NEO)? Let's find out. » 11/25/11 3:00pm 11/25/11 3:00pm

10 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Asteroids, Comets & Other Near…

Many of you have probably heard about asteroid 2005 YU55, the massive rocky body that tomorrow night will collide with Earth in a ball of flames pass the planet safely, albeit closer than any asteroid in the last 35 years. » 11/07/11 10:24am 11/07/11 10:24am

Fewer asteroids are menacing Earth than we thought — and we know where…

NASA recently repurposed a satellite called WISE that had completed its mission with all instruments intact and quite a bit of fuel. Renaming the mission NEOWISE, the space agency gave the satellite a new job: map the entire volume of space in the vicinity of Earth's orbit around the sun, looking for every possible… » 9/30/11 10:20am 9/30/11 10:20am

The biggest asteroids to pass by Earth, presented as an infographic

Designer Zachary Vabolis has catalogued 17 asteroids over 1000 meters that have skimmed by Earth or will in the near future. Who's coming by next? The 32,000-meter 1036 Ganymed, which whizzes by on October 13, 2011. » 10/23/10 12:50pm 10/23/10 12:50pm