"Juno" flies by Earth on its way to orbit Jupiter, but suffers a glitch during the fly-by that puts it in safe mode.
The China National Space Administration probe Chang'e 5 lifts off from the surface of the moon as it begins a journey back to Earth after collecting samples of lunar soil. The ascender will rendezvous with the orbiter, transferring over the samples, and the orbiter will then land at a location in Inner Mongolia, China.
The European Space Agency-JAXA space probe BepiColombo makes its final gravity assist around Earth, and is now on course for Venus, where it will make several gravity assist manoeuvres before finally arriving at Mercury in 2025.
NASA reports that it has detected a huge meteor explosion in Earth's atmosphere on December 18, 2018, above Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula. The explosion went largely unnoticed due to its location. The explosion, which was ten times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, was the second largest of its kind in 30 years.