This year's American Astronomical Society meeting featured tons and tons of news on exoplanets. They're everywhere! And not just planets, but also asteroids, comets, and more....
Last week the GRAIL mission published their first scientific results, and what they have found will send many geophysicists back to the drawing board to explain how the Moon formed and why it looks the way it does now. To explain how, I'm going to have to back way up, and explain the basic science behind gravity data.
Monday was the big Curiosity day at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. A morning press briefing was followed by an afternoon science session. I traveled to San Francisco briefly just to attend those two events. Here's my notes on the first science reports from the mission.
I'm in San Francisco, reporting from the American Geophysical Union meeting. This morning, there was a much-anticipated press briefing featuring the latest results from Curiosity.
Water ice at Mercury's poles? That's crazy, right? The MESSENGER team has made a very good case that radar-bright material seen by the Arecibo telescope is, in fact, water ice, covered in most places by a veneer of dark organic material.
Springer has made online access to PDF copies of several of their journals free through November 30. One of them, Space Science Reviews, is the one that publishes the canonical papers on most spacecraft instruments. It's a bonanza!
I asked Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to take a photo, and it turned out better than I had imagined: an incredibly fresh, well-preserved, dramatically rayed oblique impact crater.
I'm directing a question at professional and amateur space scientists and educators: could I make slide sets that would help you educate the public about what's going on in planetary exploration?
Today I stumbled upon the Lunar and Planetary Institute's Lunar Sample Atlas, and was reminded of how much I love petrographic thin sections. They can make unassuming, cruddy looking rocks beautiful.
Continuing my writeup of notes from last week's Division for Planetary Sciences meeting: presentations on the risks of future asteroid impacts. How much risk do we face, and what are the appropriate actions to take in the face of that risk?
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/10/23 10:15 CDT
Join me and Fraser Cain for a brief update on Curiosity and other exciting science presented at last week's Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, and get your pressing space questions answered! The Google+ Hangout is on Wednesday, October 24, at 16:00 PDT / 23:00 UTC. Note: this one will end about 15 minutes early.
Planetary Surface Processes provides a rigorous overview of every process that shapes the appearance of planetary surfaces, and I'll be referring to it to help me explain everything from impact cratering to isostasy.
New ground-based images of Uranus show more finely detailed structure than any photos I have ever seen.
A summary of just one talk from the Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, by Lindy Elkins-Tanton, which provided a neat explanation for how asteroids can be melted and layered on the inside yet have a primitive-looking exterior.
During my visit to D.C. to discuss Planetary Exploration funding with key people on the Hill, members of the Planetary Society gathered at George Washington University to hear the latest science results from NASA's Curiosity and Opportunity rovers.
In the first full day of the annual meeting of the Division of Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society, I listened to scientific sessions on icy worlds and on an exoplanet in a four-star system.
A Curiosity press briefing yesterday gave some of the first results from ChemCam and APXS on the rock "Jake Matijevic." It was a little too much petrology for most people; I do my best to explain.