China outlines its space exploration ambitions
Missions to the Moon and Mars will dominate China's focus
China released a new white paper on its policy and activities in space, outlining ambitious deep space exploration, human spaceflight and space science projects as major priorities for the years up to 2020 and beyond.
SpaceX and the Blank Slate
Starting anew vs. tried and true
SpaceX's plans to colonize Mars differ considerably from NASA's Journey to Mars ambitions. But direct comparison is difficult. SpaceX is able to wipe the slate clean and start fresh with a bold new approach to humans in space. NASA has no such luxury, and must use existing pieces and people to make their goals a reality.
Promise, Transition, and Transformation
Reflections on a Rocket Road Trip
After 10 days, four NASA centers, two contractors, and hundreds of miles, Casey Dreier shares his initial reflections on the state of NASA's Space Launch System rocket and its future.
NASA’s managers have begun the process for a competition to select a new planetary mission to launch in the mid-2020s that will address one of the most important questions in planetary science.
The future Chang'e 4 lunar farside landing mission is rapidly taking shape. Now the mission's team is coming to a consensus on the landing location, as well as on the mission's instrument package.
A difficult but necessary decision by ESA and Roskosmos to postpone the launch of the ExoMars rover from 2018 to 2020 raises a question about the fate of other planetary exploration programs in the pipelines of both space agencies.
Lockheed Proposes to have Humans Orbiting Mars by 2028
Their new concept shares core values with the Society's report from last year
Lockheed Martin proposed a system to send humans to orbit Mars in the year 2028—a concept that shares many core values with The Planetary Society's report, Humans Orbiting Mars, we released last year.
At a recent meeting of an advisory group for NASA, the Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary Science (CAPS), Jim Green, the head of NASA’s Planetary Science Division, and Barry Goldstein from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, provided updates on plans to explore our solar system's ocean worlds.
This past week brought to the fore two challenges for NASA’s managers as they try to enable the richest possible mix of coming planetary missions. At stake are whether the agency will be able to select two Discovery missions from the current competition, and whether there will be the possibility of a mission selected for Enceladus and/or Titan in the next decade.
What Does a 'Good' Budget for Planetary Science Look Like?
How to evaluate the coming 2017 budget request and projections
NASA's 2017 budget request comes out on Tuesday, here's how you can evaluate if the budget for the Planetary Science Division is good or not. It's not just about 2017, but the next five years.
[Updated] An Extraordinary Budget for NASA in 2016
Congressional omnibus increases the space agency's budget by $1.3 billion
Congress's plan to fund the U.S. government in 2016 includes a stellar $1.3 billion increase for NASA over last year, nearly $730 million above the President's request.
NASA announced the first-round selections for its next Discovery mission today. A total of five planetary mission concepts -- three targeted at asteroids, two at Venus -- will move to the next stage of the competition.
Learn all about a sustainable, affordable path to get humans to the Red Planet—a path that goes through Mars orbit and Phobos.