Geophysicists announced this week that they have successfully collected key samples from the site of the asteroid strike that likely wiped out the dinosaurs. Joe Tucciarone/Science Source hide caption

toggle caption Joe Tucciarone/Science Source

Geologists Find Clues In Crater Left By Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid

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Dwarf planet Ceres is seen in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, where it resides well away from Earth. NASA is hoping to quell online rumors that a massive near-Earth asteroid is due to hit us next month. NASA/Reuters/Landov hide caption

toggle caption NASA/Reuters/Landov

For helping to find asteroids, NASA has set up a contest with cash awards. In 2012, the agency said that "more potentially hazardous asteroids, or PHAs, are closely aligned with the plane of our solar system than previous models suggested." NASA hide caption

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These NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope images reveal a never-before-seen set of six comet-like tails radiating from a body in the asteroid belt designated P/2013 P5. NASA, ESA, D. Jewitt (University of California, Los Angeles), J. Agarwal (Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research), H. Weaver (Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory), M. Mutchler (STScI), and S. Larson (University of Arizona) hide caption

toggle caption NASA, ESA, D. Jewitt (University of California, Los Angeles), J. Agarwal (Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research), H. Weaver (Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory), M. Mutchler (STScI), and S. Larson (University of Arizona)

Radar images of asteroid 1998 QE2, taken when the cosmic traveler was about 3.75 million miles from Earth, revealed that the asteroid, with a 1.7-mile diameter, has a moon or satellite revolving around it. NASA/JPL-Caltech/GSSR hide caption

toggle caption NASA/JPL-Caltech/GSSR

A meteor's vapor trail above the city of Chelyabinsk, Russia, on Friday. Vyacheslav Nikulin /EPA /LANDOV hide caption

toggle caption Vyacheslav Nikulin /EPA /LANDOV

An illustration of what asteroid 2012 DA 14 may look like as it approaches Earth. NASA/JPL-CalTech/EPA /LANDOV hide caption

toggle caption NASA/JPL-CalTech/EPA /LANDOV

Nell Greenfieldboyce, for the NPR Newscast

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An artist's impression of a gamma-ray burst, a powerful jet of energy lasting from less than a second to several minutes. The most powerful events in the universe, they are thought to be mostly associated with the explosion of stars that collapse into black holes. A. Roquette/ESO hide caption

toggle caption A. Roquette/ESO