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Blog Archive


Intro Astronomy Class 5: Venus (continued) and Mars

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2014/03/06 10:49 CST

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

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A new map of Mars from some pretty old data

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2014/03/04 11:46 CST | 3 comments

The United States Geological Survey recently issued an improved version of the Viking color map of Mars. This 40-year-old data set still provides the prettiest global-scale map of the planet.

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A Spin Through the Inner Solar System

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2014/02/24 09:57 CST | 1 comments

Animated maps of the planets show the spheres in motion.

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

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2013/10/25 04:32 CDT | 3 comments

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

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Mars, Old and New: A Personal View by Bruce Murray

Posted by Jennifer Vaughn on 2013/09/03 06:07 CDT | 1 comments

An interview with Bruce Murray from 2001 about his perspectives on Mars science and exploration: past, present, and future.

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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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Book Review: The International Atlas of Mars Exploration, by Phil Stooke

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/10/12 04:31 CDT | 3 comments

I've been waiting for the publication of this book for years. Phil Stooke's International Atlas of Mars Exploration, just published by Cambridge University Press, is an exhaustively awesome labor of love, chronicling the first five decades of Mars exploration in pictures, maps, and facts.

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Mars Exploration Family Portrait

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/11/23 12:26 CST | 1 comments

Jason Davis put together this neat summary of the checkered history of Mars exploration.

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Bringing MOLA altimetry tracks into Google Mars

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/08/27 05:02 CDT

I've had a fun morning of noodling around learning how to write KML files, and have produced one for Google Mars that shows you all of the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter tracks that cross the area Opportunity has driven through already, as well as the area of Endeavour crater.

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One month, one journal, so many missed space stories!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/06/24 10:53 CDT

Or: Emily reads you the table of contents of Icarus.

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Big hunks of carbonate rock on Mars at last

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/06/10 04:33 CDT

Carbonate rocks should be all over Mars. But it's been hard to find carbonates—surprisingly so.

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Find pics and track the rovers in Google Mars

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/02/11 05:28 CST

I think a goodly proportion of you readers have already figured this out for yourselves since it was launched last March, but I didn't download and install it until last weekend, so this is new to me: Google Mars is awesome.

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Your chance to shoot your own high-resolution pictures of Mars

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/01/20 11:48 CST

The HiRISE public suggestion tool, called HiWish, is a Web site that allows you to log in and select a spot on Mars as a suggestion for where the HiRISE instrument should take an image.

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Buttoning up the Mars Orbiter Camera science investigation

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/01/15 04:21 CST

The science team for Mars Orbiter Camera, or "MOC" (pronounced "mock") has just published a paper that attempts to summarize an investigation that spanned more than two decades.

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Mapping Mars, now and in history

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2009/02/26 04:23 CST

Planetary cartographer Phil Stooke has been working on a cool project to compose and compare maps of Mars that show how we saw the planet throughout the Space Age.

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Why is only half of Mars magnetized?

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2008/10/24 09:21 CDT | 1 comments

An article in the September 26 issue of Science neatly explains why only the southern half of Mars is strongly magnetized.

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White Rock through the ages: Mars Global Surveyor (1997-2006)

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2008/02/22 11:24 CST

We first spotted the strange bright feature colloquially known as "White Rock" in Mariner 9 images from 1972, and revisited it, without learning much more, in Viking images from the late 1970s.

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Martian Orbiter Takes Pictures of Neighboring Crafts Passing By

Posted by Amir Alexander on 2005/05/19 07:20 CDT

During April 2005, the Mars Global Surveyor happened to pass relatively close to Odyssey and Mars Express. What resulted were remarkably clear pictures of human-made spacecraft orbiting and alien world.

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