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Blog Archive

 

Your Name...On Its Way to the Stars?
Jon Lomberg on the New Horizons Message Initiative

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2013/10/08 07:29 CDT

This week's Planetary Radio features artist Jon Lomberg inviting listeners to join the New Horizons Message Initiative.

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An early look at Comet ISON

Posted by Jason Davis on 2013/10/08 01:01 CDT | 2 comments

Comet ISON is brightening as it approaches the Sun, and can now be seen from many ground-based telescopes.

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Our Improved Optical Search for ET
New hardware processes terabytes of data every second

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2013/10/08 11:15 CDT

The Planetary Society Optical SETI (OSETI) Telescope was successfully upgraded and fully tested, and is now fully operational looking for aliens. Here are some updates on the performance and progress. In summary, the upgraded telescope is performing just as hoped and is scanning the skies.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Roves to Solander West, into Winter Campground
Sols 3415 - 3444

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2013/10/07 07:06 CDT

The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission stepped up preparations for the coming Martian winter in September as Opportunity rounded the northern tip of Solander Point and drove into what will be her campground at Endeavour Crater for the next six months or so. It's been nearly a year in the planning. Now, from the rover's first look around, this winter could turn out to be one for the books.

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Announcement for DPS 2013: New plan for "Agency Night" features...me!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/07 05:58 CDT | 1 comments

I'll be representing The Planetary Society on a quickly-replanned panel at tomorrow's Division for Planetary Sciences Meeting Agency Night, in the absence of any representatives from federal funding agencies.

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DPS 2013: Some quick updates on Mercury

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/07 04:51 CDT

Some notes from the first day of the Division for Planetary Sciences meeting on Mercury.

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An Ongoing Odyssey

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2013/10/07 12:42 CDT | 2 comments

Twelve years on, Mars Odyssey just keeps sending great images.

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Gaia Prepares for Ultimate Galactic Census

Posted by Jason Davis on 2013/10/06 10:42 CDT | 2 comments

The European Space Agency's Gaia spacecraft is set to embark on a five-year, billion-star census next month.

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Planetary evangelism

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/06 02:51 CDT | 6 comments

It's so exciting when the small talk that lubricates social interactions with strangers turns into an excited discussion of space and science.

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Congratulations to LADEE on arrival at the Moon!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/06 08:33 CDT | 2 comments

After a one-month journey from Earth to the Moon, NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) safely entered orbit at 10:57 UTC today, October 6.

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Photos: India's Mars Orbiter Mission arrives at launch site

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/05 02:39 CDT | 1 comments

ISRO posted five photos from the momentous day of the Mars Orbiter Mission's shipment to Sriharikota.

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On space kindness and the Chelyabinsk meteor

Posted by Vitaliy Egorov on 2013/10/04 07:04 CDT | 1 comments

Through an act of kindness, we now have images of the Chelyabinsk meteor trail from Russia's Elektro-L satellite.

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Government shutdown closes 3 of 4 National Radio Astronomy Observatories

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/04 06:38 CDT | 3 comments

The shutdown of the federal government continues to claim casualties. Today, the Green Bank Telescope, Very Large Array, and Very Long Baseline Arrays all shut their doors, blinding us to the radio sky and scuttling long-term research projects.

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The 45th Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, Oct 6-11, 2013

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/04 03:21 CDT

The annual meeting of the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society begins on Sunday and runs for a week in Denver, Colorado. I'll be attending all week, bringing you the latest news from across the solar system.

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Google+ Hangout with ESA about Europe's Mars exploration

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/04 09:00 CDT

The European Space Agency invited me to join Mars Express project scientist Olivier Witasse, and spacecraft oeprations manager Michel Denis for a Hangout on Europe's recent and future exploration of Mars and Phobos.

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NASA's MAVEN Mission Spared from Shutdown
Launch preparations will resume

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/10/03 04:40 CDT | 7 comments

Launch preparations will resume for NASA's MAVEN spacecraft, due to launch to Mars on November 18th. Work had previously been suspended, potentially causing the spacecraft to miss its once-every-26-month launch opportunity.

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Super cool Phobos and Deimos animations from Mars Express

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/03 02:17 CDT

I've been delving in to the Mars Express image archive this week, checking out its images of Phobos, and found a couple of really cool time-series of images to assemble into animations.

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I cannot volunteer my time to work on NASA business during the furlough

Posted by Les Johnson on 2013/10/03 11:55 CDT | 9 comments

Today I received my furlough notice from NASA. Since my job isn’t considered “excepted,” in other words, since no one will be injured or die if I don’t report for work, then I am to remain at home until recalled to work after the Congress passes and the President signs some sort of budget or continuing resolution to keep the government running.

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Yes, there seems to be a hole in Curiosity's left front wheel, and no, that's not a problem

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/02 11:22 CDT | 25 comments

Some brand-new images just arrived from Curiosity on Mars, and two of the most recent are Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) images of the wheels. Today's images contained two little surprises.

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LADEE has finally left Earth

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/02 02:39 CDT | 2 comments

When LADEE launched on September 6, it launched into Earth orbit. Today, it is finally on a path that will take it to its October 6 lunar orbit insertion. Its operation is continuing normally in the face of the U.S. government's shutdown yesterday, as is that of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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