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Galileo Messengers: Cruise to Venus, Earth, Gaspra, Earth, Ida, and almost to Jupiter

Emily Lakdawalla • February 05, 2013

It's taken me a year to face the emotionally draining task of reading and writing about Galileo's cruise phase as chronicled in the mission's newsletters.

Pretty picture: Landsat view of southern Greenland

Björn Jónsson • November 13, 2012

This is a very large (19000 pixels square) mosaic of the fjords and glaciers of southern Greenland. I had been interested for a long time in experimenting with the processing of Earth satellite imagery just to get a comparison to the other planets.

Hurricane Sandy: Thanks for lives saved already

Emily Lakdawalla • October 29, 2012

Today hurricane Sandy is a major threat to life and property across the west coast of the northern Atlantic ocean. I just want to give thanks in advance to all the people who have devoted their careers to making sure that Americans have sufficient warning of devastating, unstoppable weather events like this one.

Birth of a New Moon

Emily Lakdawalla • July 05, 2012

As astronaut Don Pettit prepared for his return to Earth, he tweeted several beautiful shots from the Space Station.

Talking Climate With Bill Nye

Mat Kaplan • July 03, 2012

Talk about changing climates on this world and others brought 600 people to the Boulder Theater.

A solar eclipse - as viewed from the Moon

Emily Lakdawalla • May 28, 2012

A solar eclipse isn't just a spiffy sight to Earthlings; it looks pretty cool to lunar dwellers as well.

More Evidence for Impact Origin for Colombia’s Vichada Structure

Bruce Betts • May 08, 2012

Evidence continues to pile up that the Rio Vichada structure in Colombia is indeed the largest impact structure in South America.

Examining India's new RISAT 1 Earth observation satellite

Jason Davis • May 02, 2012

Last week, India launched RISAT 1, a new Earth-observing satellite. How does its synthetic aperture radar compare to that of Envisat, which has fallen silent?

Big Bend designated International Dark Sky Park

Neil Patrick Stewart • February 16, 2012

Last week, I received a press release with the headline "Big Bend National Park Designated As International Dark Sky Park." I asked my brother Neil to write something about this announcement for me.

Six days in the crater (day one)

Pat Donohue • February 03, 2012

This is the first in a series of posts based on field notes and memories supplemented by background reading material from the Meteor Crater Field Camp that was held from October 17-23, 2010.

Parallel planetary processes create semantic headaches

Emily Lakdawalla • January 26, 2012

I ran into a semantic problem today: what to call the science of studying liquids on Titan?

Evaporites on Titan

Emily Lakdawalla • January 12, 2012

Evaporites form on planetary surfaces when dissolved chemical solids precipitate out of saturated solution as their liquid solvent evaporates and, until recently, were known to exist only on Earth and Mars. This article from the IAG Planetary Geomorphology Working Group describes the third planetary instance of evaporite, discovered on Saturn's moon Titan.

Steno's principles and planetary geology

Emily Lakdawalla • January 11, 2012

The Google Doodle for January 11, 2012 celebrates Nicholas Steno, one of the founding fathers of modern geology, on the occasion of his 374th birthday. This article describes Steno's set of rules that guide geologists in reading rocks to tell the story of how a place came to be and how the rules are currently used in geology.

The state of Earth observation, January 2012

Jason Davis • January 09, 2012

As of November 2011, the Earth Observing Handbook counts 109 active missions to study the Earth as a planet, with 112 more approved and planned for the future. Jason Davis provides an overview of key current and upcoming earth-observing missions.

The 70-meter dishes of the Deep Space Network

Emily Lakdawalla • November 28, 2011

I was inspired by my recent trip to Goldstone to put together this poster showing all three of the great 70-meter dishes of the Deep Space Network. There's one at each of the three complexes, at Goldstone, at Robledo (near Madrid, Spain), and at Tidbinbilla (near Canberra, Australia).

Earth science's next big thing

Jason Davis • September 22, 2011

Meet the next big thing in NASA's mission to study planet Earth: NPP, the NPOESS Preparatory Project satellite.

Video: Soaring over Earth

Emily Lakdawalla • September 19, 2011

This amazing video has already been posted by basically every other space blogger but I can't resist featuring it too, especially because I just realized that it was not made by NASA but instead by a member of the public digging into public NASA archives of image data -- yay for amateurs!

Scale solar system presentation slide, a provisional version for you to review

Emily Lakdawalla • September 15, 2011

I'm preparing a talk for the Pacific Astronomy and Telescope Show here in Pasadena on Sunday afternoon at 1:45. I have spent the morning putting together a slide that I have long wanted to have for presentations.

Pretty picture: Earth and Moon from JunoCam

Emily Lakdawalla • August 30, 2011

It's always awe-inspiring to see our great world as just a tiny spot within vast space. The latest spacecraft to get such a view of Earth and the Moon is the Jupiter-bound Juno.

NASA thinks Earth is a planet, too

Jason Davis • August 08, 2011

Although much of the publicity NASA receives focuses on planetary exploration, Earth observing satellites like Aqua keep tabs on our home planet's weather and climate.

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