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NASA said Tuesday that there is the possibility a comet could impact Mars in October 2014.

Based on observations made last Friday, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has the comet passing within about 31,000 miles of Mars. That s less than one-eighth the distance between Earth and the Moon.

NASA said that while the possibility of an impact cannot be excluded, the probability is less than one-in-600.

It s unlikely that the comet will be seen from Earth as it approaches Mars, but it may be bright enough in mid-September to be seen by small telescopes or binoculars from the southern hemisphere.

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