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Large Asteroid Safely Passes Earth

A large cosmic rock safely has flown past Earth.

The 46-meter asteroid on February 15 passed some 28,000 kilometer from Earth, which is closer than some satellites.

It is considered the closest recorded flight of an object of that size.

The asteroid was named 2012 DA14 after it was spotted by astronomers from an observatory in southern Spain last year.

The asteroid missed Earth hours after a much smaller meteor exploded above Russia's Ural Mountains.

Astronomers consider the two events coincidental because the objects involved were traveling in opposite directions.

The asteroid was visible to astronomers in Australia because of the clear night sky, but it was invisible in the United States.

Based on reporting by AP, BBC, and dpa