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August 14, 2007: The Hubble Space Telescope captures this rare view of the ring system of the planet Uranus, tilted edge-on to Earth. The rings can only be seen edge-on from Earth every 42 years

Asteroid 2012 DA14 will pass closest on February 15, 2013. As the image above shows, it will pass much closer than the orbit of the moon – closer even that orbiting geosynchronous satellites (22,000 miles).

A new observatory still under construction has given astronomers a major breakthrough in understanding a nearby planetary system that can provide valuable clues about how such systems form and evolve.

Comet Lovejoy was a sight to behold from Earth's Southern Hemisphere in late 2011. Here the comet is reflected in the water of Mandurah Esturary near Perth on December 21, 2011. Image Credit: Colin Legg.