A close escape for earth -- our planet has dodged an asteroid strike. Scientists say the timing of the fly-by, which came hours after a meteor shower in Russia, was a coincidence.
A meteorite exploded in Russia hours before an asteroid raced past the Earth – at the closest distance for an object its size. But the two events are unrelated, says the European Space Agency's Heiner Klinkrad.
Two comets and two asteroids will pass close to the Earth in 2013. Stargazers can also look forward to solar eclipses in Australasia and Central Africa, as well as the launch of Europe's magnetic field mission, Swarm.
Europe has completed its last cargo delivery to the International Space Station, leaving future drops to US firms and Russia. The European Space Agency will focus on building modules for NASA's planned Orion craft.
Astronomers say an asteroid has whizzed safely past Earth over the Indian Ocean, as injured Russians recovered from a separate meteor's sonic boom over the Ural mountains. Scientists said the two events were unrelated.
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