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Blogs

Blog Archive

 

Blast from the Past: Spirit's tracks at the "End of the Rainbow"

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/04/09 09:05 CDT | 3 comments

Doug Ellison shared this lovely panorama via Twitter over the weekend. It's from the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit, taken back in 2004. The drunken path in the foreground is a visual record of just how exciting it was for Spirit to have finally made it to the Columbia Hills, and to rocks that were not fragments of basalt.

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One Day in the Solar System

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2013/04/08 09:12 CDT | 4 comments

Dispatches from five different worlds--all sent by robotic spacecraft on the same day.

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More Evidence for a Habitable Mars from EGU 2013

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/04/08 06:36 CDT | 3 comments

NASA's Curiosity rover has acquired further evidence that Mars's atmosphere was once dense enough to support liquid water on the surface.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Hunkers Down for Solar Conjunction, Final Science on Matijevic Hill
Sols 3236 - 3265

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2013/04/02 02:07 CDT | 5 comments

As the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission trekked further into its tenth year of exploring the Red Planet, Opportunity spent the month of March finishing up its science investigations on Matijevic Hill.

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Ice Cap to Ice Cap with Mars Odyssey

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2013/04/02 11:24 CDT | 2 comments

Explore the mysterious Martian landscape with the workhorse of the Solar System, Mars Odyssey.

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Field Report From Mars: Sols 3237-3262 - March 4–29, 2013

Posted by Larry Crumpler on 2013/03/29 11:27 CDT

Flash memory or computer problems oddly occurred on both Curiosity and Opportunity around Feb 27. One possibility is that a large solar flare resulted in radiation at Mars sufficient to temporarily corrupt the memory on both rovers.

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Curiosity update, sol 227: Some sharpshooting and a dusty deck

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/29 10:50 CDT | 4 comments

Curiosity is back to science operations, though the activities are limited in scope by the fact that conjunction is fast approaching. Here's a couple of neat images from sol 227.

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LPSC 2013: watery Martian minerals

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/28 12:26 CDT | 3 comments

Some interesting results from the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference on clay minerals on Mars and what they might mean about ancient water.

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A Different Angle on Mars

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2013/03/25 11:53 CDT

A new slant on Martian landscapes from Mars Global Surveyor.

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LPSC 2013: Sedimentary stratigraphy with Curiosity and Opportunity

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/20 04:19 CDT | 4 comments

A mind-boggling quantity of information is being presented at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. In my first report from the meeting, I try to make sense of the Curiosity and Opportunity sessions.

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Yes, it was once a Martian lake: Curiosity has been sent to the right place

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/12 05:36 CDT | 7 comments

The news from the Curiosity mission today is this: Curiosity has found, at the site called John Klein, a rock that contains evidence for a past environment that would have been suitable for Earth-like microorganisms.

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The First Taste of Mars

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2013/03/11 10:53 CDT | 3 comments

Nearly four decades before Curiosity, we dug into Mars for the first time. The pictures are still amazing.

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Planetary Society Hangout: March 7th, 2013 - What's Going On With Curiosity and a NASA Budget Update
Thursday at noon PST/3pm EST/20:00 UT

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/03/07 12:35 CST | 3 comments

Thursday at noon PST/3pm EST/20:00 UT we check in with Emily Lakdawalla to bring us up to speed with Curiosity's computer problems and we check in on NASA's budget status.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Begins Wrapping Science on Matijevic Hill
Sols 3209 - 3235

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2013/03/06 01:03 CST | 1 comment

As February turned to March, Opportunity was conducting some of its final science investigations on Matijevic Hill, the MER team was making preparations for the robot field geologist's trek south for the next winter, and the Mars Exploration Rovers mission was checking off another month of exploration.

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Will comet Siding Spring make a meteor shower on Mars?

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/05 04:34 CST | 6 comments

JPL's Solar System Dynamics group shows that there is still a possibility that C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) could hit Mars. But the uncertainty in its position at that time is large -- the closest approach could happen an hour earlier, or an hour later -- so we're a long way from knowing yet whether it will or (more likely) won't impact.

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Browse Curiosity's data in the Analyst's notebook

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/03/05 01:29 CST

Last week the Curiosity mission made its first data delivery to the Planetary Data System. The bad news: none of the science camera image data is there yet. The good news: there are lots and lots of other goodies to explore.

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Field Report From Mars: Sol 3220-3236 - March 1, 2013

Posted by Larry Crumpler on 2013/03/01 10:27 CST

Opportunity completed the observations of the outcrop noted in the previous report and has now moved back down slope.

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Checking in with the Future of Mars Exploration at NASA

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/02/27 02:17 CST | 4 comments

Reporting from NASA's Mars Exploration Program working group on the latest updates in scientific exploration of the red planet.

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MarsFest 2013: Mars in the Mojave
March 1st - 3rd, 2013

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2013/02/26 01:14 CST | 1 comment

From March 1st - 3rd I'll be representing the Planetary Society at the 2nd annual MarsFest, located in Death Valley National Park.

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Webcast Tonight! Planetary Scientist and Society President Jim Bell
Watch It Live or Later On Demand

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2013/02/20 07:59 CST

Professor Bell's topic is "Exploring Mars, the Moon, Asteroids, and Comets with Rovers and Landers," and there is no one better to talk about this subject.

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