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Blog Archive


The Voyager Mission Updates

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/09/14 01:39 CDT

We take for granted now the ability to get detailed mission updates in a timely fashion via the Web. But How did people get their mission status before the Web?

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Neptune from two slightly different perspectives

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/09/06 10:39 CDT

Coincidentally, two new images of Neptune were posted today, from two very different sources.

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How to Recognize Titan from Quite a Long Way Away

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/08/09 05:16 CDT

You know, I could fill this blog almost entirely with the amazing images that Gordan Ugarkovic locates, processes into prettiness, and uploads to his Flickr account.

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The enigmatic mounds of Acidalia Planitia

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/08/04 04:18 CDT

Acidalia Planitia is a large basin in Mars' northern lowlands, a dark splotch visible even from Earth telescopes.

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Goodies from the latest Cassini data release

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/08/02 05:50 CDT

I've spent a pleasurable hour or so browsing over the latest release of images from Cassini to the Planetary Data System.

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Voyager at Saturn, one year later

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/27 02:04 CDT

Here are two newly processed portraits of Saturn, showing the planet just after its equinox.

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Watching the birth and death of moonlets in Saturn's F ring

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/22 09:09 CDT

The Saturn system is always in motion, always changing. Saturn itself is a gas giant, with swirling storms, and like the other gas giants it has a host of moons flying around, perturbing each other's motions. And then there's the rings.

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Color portrait of asteroid 21 Lutetia

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/21 04:28 CDT

Since it doesn't look like the Rosetta mission is going to be releasing any color versions of their Lutetia close-encounter images any time soon, I figured it was time to make one.

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Volcanism across the solar system: Io

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/20 05:33 CDT

Three months ago, grandiosely, I announced that I was going to survey volcanism across the solar system, and I began the journey on Earth. Then I failed to follow up.

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Cassini eyes Janus

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/13 01:56 CDT

Four times a year, the Cassini mission releases three months' worth of data gathered from Saturn and its moons to NASA's Planetary Data System.

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Rosetta's Lutetia pictures

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/11 12:17 CDT

I saw these pictures for the first time just 10 minutes before boarding my flight back home, and forced myself to download everything I could find as quickly as possible without pausing to actually look at them.

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Lutetia -- and Saturn!!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/10 04:32 CDT

A quick post of just one of the gorgeous images from Rosetta's flyby of Lutetia today; for more, see the Rosetta Blog. But this one was just too pretty to wait for.

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Rosetta Lutetia flyby successful; approach images posted; high-res images yet to come

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/07/10 01:47 CDT

All appears to be going very smoothly on Rosetta through, and after, its flyby today of asteroid (21) Lutetia.

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Hubble turns 20

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/04/23 03:02 CDT

Tomorrow is the 20th anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope. It's hard to believe it's been going strong for so many years.

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A feast of pretty pictures from Cassini

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/04/12 01:28 CDT

Cassini has it almost too easy. Point at anything in the Saturn system and you're guaranteed of a shot that looks, at least, pretty.

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A busy day for Cassini: Dione plus bonus Enceladus and Janus

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/04/08 12:39 CDT

The Cassini Saturn orbiter just completed its second very close flyby of Saturn's mid-sized iceball moon Dione, and the images from that encounter have been streaming onto the Cassini raw images website this morning.

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Asteroid 2867 Steins

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/01/11 02:01 CST

This description of asteroid 2867 Steins is based upon an article published in the January 8, 2010 issue of Science by H. Uwe Keller and numerous coauthors and on a related press release.

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Awesome Mars Express view of Phobos and Deimos together

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2009/12/11 11:24 CST

My inbox was exploding this morning with messages about a tremendously cool animation released this morning by ESA's Mars Express team. It shows Phobos crossing Deimos, in what's known as a "mutual event."

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Opportunity's poking at Marquette Island; Cassini's catching dancing moons

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2009/11/18 04:58 CST

Since tomorrow's class is going to be on playing with raw images from the rovers and Cassini, I've been playing with recent raw images from the rovers and Cassini! I just thought I'd share a couple of the fun items I've been working with.

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New Horizons sees Io erupting!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2007/02/27 11:15 CST

There were two new pictures posted on the New Horizons Science Operations Center website this morning, of Io, and if you enhance the images a bit, there are two clear volcanic plumes visible on the limb -- Tvashtar and Prometheus are active!

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