News An aerial picture of the Grand Canyon in Arizona from around 30,000 feet (10,000m)

It was thought that the global landmark was perhaps 70million years old

Three years late, Japanese asteroid dust probe returns

Considering the problems that have plagued the Japanese space probe Hayabusa during its seven-year, 2.5 billion-mile unmanned mission, it was remarkable that it returned home at all, never mind in quite so spectacular a fashion.

The end of the world as we know it

Forget man-made threats – the catalyst for the apocalypse will come from outer space, warns astronomer Chris Impey

Japan space probe set for Australian outback return

A Japanese space probe which scientists hope will bring back a sample from an asteroid is due to return to Earth on schedule late today in the Australian outback, an Australian defence official said.

The natural world: The impact of a dramatic setting in Arizona

In front of me is one of the best preserved impact craters in the world, a giant hole in the sedimentary rocks of the Colorado Plateau, near Flagstaff in Northern Arizona. About 50,000 years ago you would have been in serious trouble if you were standing where I am today; a large iron meteorite, weighing in at perhaps 500,000 tonnes slammed into the Earth's surface at speeds in excess of 11km/s. The most recent studies indicate that this colossal impact released 10-11 megatonnes of energy – over 500 times more than the atomic bomb that exploded over Nagasaki in 1945.

Why the dinosaurs died (and it wasn't because they were stupid)

Extended winter brought on by gigantic asteroid strike wiped largest-ever land creatures from face of the Earth

Methane findings boost for life on Mars hopes

Hopes of finding life on Mars have been boosted by British scientists studying sources of methane on the planet.

Evidence of water found on moon

Scientists announced tonight that they have discovered “buckets” of water on the Moon following the analysis of data from a spacecraft that was deliberately crashed into a lunar crater last month.

Mobile phone firm behind meteorite hoax

A Swedish mobile phone operator acknowledged today it was behind an elaborate meteorite hoax in Latvia and pledged to reimburse the Baltic nation for all costs spent by police, rescue and military workers in the incident.

Nasa bombs the Moon – but where was the fallout?

Unexpected twist in lunar mission to discover frozen water but scientists remain confident of success

Moon 'bombing' makes an impact - really

A mission that promised dramatic fireworks as two spacecraft smashed into the Moon at more than 5,000 mph started looking like a damp squib today, but Nasa scientists hailed it as a success.

Titan moon resembles Earth

Saturn's smog-ridden moon Titan bears a striking resemblance to Earth despite its alien environment, a study has revealed.

How scientists caught an asteroid

Astronomers are there to pick up pieces after space rock 'the size of a lorry' explodes entering Earth's atmosphere

A Martian's view of Mars

Remarkable new images taken by Nasa rover vehicles on the surface of the Red Planet show a rocky, barren desert that looks surprisingly like home

Ready to Wear: 'Stephen Jones stole the show last week with hats inspired by Pac-Man'

What do Rei Kawakubo, Marc Jacobs and John Galliano have in common? The milliner Stephen Jones. This is quite an accolade – after all, in their own, highly idiosyncratic way, these three names are among the most feted in international fashion. And working away quietly, behind the scenes, is Mr Jones, a diffident character who creates quite the finest hats in the industry, adding the finishing, quixotic and rigorously executed touches to their groundbreaking designs.

Tanzania: Animal magic

From baboons to wildebeest, Tanzania's Northern Circuit offers up a mind-boggling array of wildlife. James Palmer chills out with the zebra, then hangs around the hippo pool
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Lewis Hamilton will start the Singapore Grand Prix from pole, with Nico Rosberg second and Daniel Ricciardo third
F1... for floodlit Singapore Grand Prix
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'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
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Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam