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Favorite Astro Plots #2: Condensation of the solar system

Emily Lakdawalla • October 14, 2015

Behold: the story of how our solar system began, in one chart. This is the second installment in a series of planetary scientists' favorite plots. Today's #FaveAstroPlot was suggested by spectroscopist Michael Bramble.

GSA 2014: The puzzle of Gale crater's basaltic sedimentary rocks

Emily Lakdawalla • October 23, 2014

At the Geological Society of America conference this week, Curiosity scientists dug into the geology of Gale crater and shared puzzling results about the nature of the rocks that the rover has found there.

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.

Planetary Radio: Don't Step in That Puddle!

Mat Kaplan • July 01, 2013

The Planetary Science Institute's Amanda Hendrix is the guest for our July 1 episode. She finds water in the least likely places, including Luna.

Many More Colors than Red: Exploring Mars with Spectroscopy

Bill Dunford • May 20, 2013

Mars gives up its secrets through the unseen colors of its rocks.

LPSC 2013: watery Martian minerals

Emily Lakdawalla • March 28, 2013

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

LPSC 2013: Sedimentary stratigraphy with Curiosity and Opportunity

Emily Lakdawalla • March 20, 2013

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.

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

Emily Lakdawalla • March 12, 2013

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.

Webcast Tonight! Planetary Scientist and Society President Jim Bell

Mat Kaplan • February 20, 2013

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.

Curiosity update, sol 157: Glenelg isn't just a test site anymore; it's a scientific "candy store"

Emily Lakdawalla • January 15, 2013

The Curiosity mission held a press briefing this morning for the first time since the American Geophysical Union meeting, and it was jam-packed with science. The biggest piece of news is this: it was worth it, scientifically, to go to Glenelg first, before heading to the mountain.

Curiosity update, sol 117: Progress report from AGU

Emily Lakdawalla • December 05, 2012

Monday was the big Curiosity day at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. A morning press briefing was followed by an afternoon science session. I traveled to San Francisco briefly just to attend those two events. Here's my notes on the first science reports from the mission.

Making an ugly rock beautiful

Emily Lakdawalla • November 02, 2012

Today I stumbled upon the Lunar and Planetary Institute's Lunar Sample Atlas, and was reminded of how much I love petrographic thin sections. They can make unassuming, cruddy looking rocks beautiful.

First science reports from Curiosity's APXS and ChemCam: Petrology on Jake Matijevic

Emily Lakdawalla • October 12, 2012

A Curiosity press briefing yesterday gave some of the first results from ChemCam and APXS on the rock "Jake Matijevic." It was a little too much petrology for most people; I do my best to explain.

Morphology and mineralogy on Mars

Emily Lakdawalla • May 05, 2010

A recent entry by Bethany Ehlmann from the blog of the Planetary Geomorphology Working Group of the International Association of Geomorphologists demonstrates how you can combine the power of different types of data to tease out a rich story of the past history of one spot on Mars.

astronaut on Phobos
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