NASA plans to harpoon comet

NASA is planning to use a giant crossbow and harpoon to capture samples from a speeding comet.

Christmas gamma ray burst explained?

Astronomers have come up with two competing theories to explain a mysterious cosmic explosion first detected by NASA's Swift observatory on Christmas Day 2010.

Comets created Earth's oceans

Earth's oceans could once have been giant icebergs floating through space, an ESA team has concluded, after examining the isotopic composition of a comet.

Comet is 'hyperactive' say astronomers

Comet Hartley 2 is an excitable little chap - in a class of its own, say astronomers.

NASA comet images show man-made crater

The Stardust spacecraft's Valentine's Day flyby of the Tempel 1 comet has delivered pictures of the comet that clearly show the effects of its last encounter with a spacecraft in 2005.

Probe on course for cometary rendevous

The Stardust NExT probe is preparing for an encounter on St Valentine's Day with comet Tempel 1.

NASA observes cometary snowstorm

Rather appropriately for the time of year, NASA's EPOXI team says that the mission's recent encounter with comet Hartley 2 observed a flurry of snow streaming out from the comet.

Deep Impact craft gets close to second comet

NASA's Deep Impact spacecraft got a closeup view of comet Hartley 2 yesterday, getting within 435 miles of the comet.

Rosetta spacecraft probes Lutetia asteroid

The Rosetta spacecraft has captured the first, high-quality pictures of the  "Lutetia" asteroid.

Comet McNaught was biggest yet

British scientists reckon they've identified the largest comet yet, using data from the ESA/NASA Ulysses spacecraft to measure the region of space disturbed by the its presence.

Team warns of potential catastrophe from meteorite strike

The Secure World Foundation (SWF) has warned the UN that it may be too disorganised to avoid disaster in the event of a major meteorite strike.