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New Postcards from Mars

Bill Dunford • August 18, 2014

The latest snaphots from the "Mars Webcam" include something special.

Mars orbiters plan for their October encounter with comet Siding Spring

Emily Lakdawalla • August 13, 2014

Now that we have reasonable confidence that our Mars orbiters will be safe from the close passage of comet Siding Spring, we are free to be excited about the opportunity that the encounter represents. At a community workshop on August 11, representatives from Mars missions shared their plans for great comet science.

New orbital images of Curiosity landing site from Mars Express and HiRISE

Emily Lakdawalla • May 23, 2014

Mars Express and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are keeping their eyes in the sky on Curiosity. There's a nice newly public color image of all of Gale Crater from HiRISE, and two new HiRISE images within the Curiosity landing site.

Comet Siding Spring Mars encounter: Cosmic bully spotted by ESA and NASA

ESA Mars Express Team • March 31, 2014

Hubble has taken some great new images of our 'friend,' Comet Siding Spring, due to pass by Mars at less than 136,000 km on October 19 – less than half the distance between Earth and our moon.

Comet Siding Spring Mars encounter: Ya gotta have a little ‘tude

ESA Mars Express Team • March 24, 2014

In the latest update on how the Mars Express flight control team is planning to deal with Comet Siding Spring is all about attitude -- and hiding behind the biggest guy in the fight.

Comet Siding Spring Mars encounter: How to determine the orbit of a comet?

ESA Mars Express Team • March 12, 2014

In the quest to track Comet Siding Spring, the Mars Express team tells us how computing the orbit of a comet isn't as straightforward as science fiction would have us believe.

Intro Astronomy Class 5: Venus (continued) and Mars

Bruce Betts • March 06, 2014

Continue exploring Venus and begin looking at Mars in this video of class 5 of Bruce Betts' Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy class.

Hypervelocity Cratering and Riding Out the Risk

ESA Mars Express Team • March 06, 2014

Today's update from the Mars Express team contains the realisation that, for some of the risks associated with October's Siding Spring flyby, there may not be much the team can do.

Space is really, really big – except sometimes it isn’t

ESA Mars Express Team • March 04, 2014

Here's the next installment in the continuing story of how the Mars Express team is preparing for Comet Siding Spring flyby, 19 October 2014. This week: introducing the spacecraft's subsystems and structure – and wondering how we can absorb impacts.

Comet Siding Spring Mars encounter: Why orienting Mars Express is the heart of the challenge

ESA Mars Express Team • February 28, 2014

Today's post continues where we started last week with an update from the Mars Express Flight Control Team at ESOC on their preparations for the 19 October Comet Siding Springs flyby. Today: defining the challenge!

Mars Express team readies for Siding Spring

ESA Mars Express Team • February 26, 2014

On Sunday, 19 October 2014, at around 18:30 UTC, comet C/2013 A1 – known widely as 'Siding Spring' after the Australian observatory where it was discovered in January 2013 – will make a close fly-by of Mars.

New Hills, Old Secrets

Bill Dunford • February 10, 2014

Exploring a set of newly named hills on Mars reveals tantalizing clues to the planet's story.

New Views of Martian Weather

Bill Dunford • January 20, 2014

The latest postcards from Mars Express feature cloudy skies.

What's up in planetary missions in 2014

Emily Lakdawalla • December 31, 2013

With the New Year upon us, what can we look forward to in 2014? For me, the main event of 2014 is that ESA's Rosetta mission finally -- finally! -- catches up to the comet it has been chasing for a decade. We will lose LADEE, gain two Mars orbiters, and launch Hayabusa2. The year begins with an amazing 24 spacecraft exploring or cruising toward various planetary destinations.

The Mists of Mars

Bill Dunford • December 09, 2013

Two grand canyons fill with fog, one on Earth and one on Mars.

Mars' chemical history: Phyllosian, Theiikian, Siderikian, oh my

Emily Lakdawalla • December 05, 2013

I'm returning to the deep dive into the literature that began with articles about lunar basins and then explored the geologic time scales of Earth, Moon, and Mars. Now it's time to catch up to the last decade of Mars research and learn what "phyllosian", "theiikian", and "siderikian" eras are.

Martian Maps: the North Pole

Bill Dunford • November 20, 2013

The polar plains, charted in unprecedented detail.

Noachian, Hesperian, and Amazonian, oh my! --Mars' Geologic Time Scale

Emily Lakdawalla • October 25, 2013

The Martian Geologic Time Scale is a lot more complicated than the Moon's.

Google+ Hangout with ESA about Europe's Mars exploration

Emily Lakdawalla • October 04, 2013

The European Space Agency invited me to join Mars Express project scientist Olivier Witasse, and spacecraft oeprations manager Michel Denis for a Hangout on Europe's recent and future exploration of Mars and Phobos.

Super cool Phobos and Deimos animations from Mars Express

Emily Lakdawalla • October 03, 2013

I've been delving in to the Mars Express image archive this week, checking out its images of Phobos, and found a couple of really cool time-series of images to assemble into animations.

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