This month (actually, today), Cassini had a relatively close flyby of Titan, and New Horizons will observe a very distant Kuiper belt object named 1994 JR1. Akatsuki has just fine-tuned its orbit around Venus, and Hayabusa2 has begun an 800-hour ion engine thrusting phase to steer it toward near-Earth asteroid Ryugu.
As March Madness on Earth sent sports fans into their annual kinetic frenzy watching more than 60 American teams battle it out for college basketball’s grandest title, Opportunity was experiencing her own Martian brand of March Madness.
One year after taking up its new residence in the solar system, Dawn is continuing to witness extraordinary sights on dwarf planet Ceres. Mission Director Marc Rayman brings us his monthly update on Dawn's status.
Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/03/31 04:18 CDT
Russian ISS controllers are in the process of swapping out a trash-filled cargo ship for a new one bearing fresh supplies, following the successful launch of a Progress spacecraft from Kazakhstan today.
At last week's Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, I enjoyed a large number of talks about Ceres. Now in its Low-Altitude Mapping Orbit, Dawn is showering scientists with high-resolution, color data.
Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/03/29 06:34 CDT
A miniature DVD containing images of space fans and names of Planetary Society members and supporters is ready to fly in space.
Here's a photo roundup from last night's Atlas V launch, which sent a Cygnus cargo craft on its way to the International Space Station.
Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/03/22 06:32 CDT
Just days after receiving three new crew members, the ISS is about to become a veritable shipping hub, as three cargo ships launch to the orbital laboratory in as little as three weeks.
This past week brought to the fore two challenges for NASA’s managers as they try to enable the richest possible mix of coming planetary missions. At stake are whether the agency will be able to select two Discovery missions from the current competition, and whether there will be the possibility of a mission selected for Enceladus and/or Titan in the next decade.
Follow along with The Planetary Society as the crew of Expedition 47 launches to the International Space Station. Launch is scheduled for 5:26 p.m. EDT (21:26 UTC); docking and hatch opening starts six hours later.
Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/03/17 06:30 CDT
NASA astronaut Jeff Williams embarks on his fourth trip to the ISS tomorrow. He launches aboard a Soyuz spacecraft from Baikonur with cosmonauts Alexey Ovchinin and Oleg Skripochka at 5:26 p.m. EDT (21:26 UTC).
If it's March, it's time for LPSC, the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. The 2016 LPSC runs from March 21 to 25; I'll be attending the first three days of it.
One of my favorite times of the year is upon us: the national conference of the National Science Teacher Association (NSTA). For the last couple of—er… decades, I’ve given lectures at this conference to support science teachers and find out what’s on their minds this school year.
The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter and Schiaparelli lander are safely on their way to Mars! The two lifted off at 9:31 UTC today, March 14, 2016. Orbiter and lander will arrive at Mars on October 19 at approximately 16:00 UTC. The lander is expected to last about 3 days. The orbiter will spend a year aerobraking before beginning its science mission.
How will we tell if LightSail 2's booms are fully deployed? With fiducials—visual reference guides that feature our signature Planetary Society logo.
A rocket engine that once blasted space shuttles into orbit was test-fired today in Mississippi, in preparation for its upcoming duty launching an astronaut crew to the moon.