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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Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders