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Arecibo Observatory operational after repairs to fix earthquake damage

Alessondra Springmann • April 09, 2014

Early in the morning on January 13, 2014, a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck beneath the Atlantic Ocean north of Puerto Rico, damaging Arecibo Observatory, the world’s largest single-dish radio telescope. The telescope is now operational after repairs and scientists have resumed observations. However, the future of Arecibo Observatory remains unclear due to funding uncertainties in the federal budget.

Intro Astronomy Class 7: Near Earth Asteroids and the Jupiter System

Bruce Betts • March 21, 2014

Examine the threat of near Earth asteroids and begin exploring the Jupiter System in this video of class 7 of Bruce Betts' Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy class.

[Updated] To Europa!...Slowly. First Impressions of NASA's New Budget Request

Casey Dreier • March 07, 2014

Europa may get a mission...eventually. We give our first take on the 2015 NASA Budget request. How does Planetary Exploration fare? Which projects were cancelled? Will NASA capture an asteroid? And most importantly, what can you do about it?

Intro Astronomy Class 1: Tour of the Solar System

Bruce Betts • February 11, 2014

Take a tour of the Solar System in the video of class 1 of Bruce Betts' Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy class.

Take My Free Online College Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy CSUDH Class

Bruce Betts • February 05, 2014

Our own Dr. Bruce Betts is once again teaching his Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy college course online. Come join him.

Planetary Radio: NEOWISE PI Amy Mainzer

Mat Kaplan • January 01, 2014

NEOWISE has reawakened to discover many more asteroids and comets. The mission leader thanks the amateur astronomers who follow up on these discoveries.

Watch this with your kids: Asteroid Fact versus Fiction

Emily Lakdawalla • December 12, 2013

A cute video from the OSIRIS-REx mission in the style of "AsapSCIENCE" uses a whiteboard and stop-motion animation to separate asteroid fact from fiction.

Imaging results from the Chang'e 2 Toutatis flyby

Emily Lakdawalla • November 21, 2013

There is a paper in press at Icarus by Xiaoduan Zou and five coauthors that provides the first peer-reviewed publication I've seen on the results of the imaging experiment performed during the Chang'e 2 flyby of near-Earth asteroid (4179) Toutatis.

One More U.N. Step Forward on NEOs

Bruce Betts • October 24, 2013

This week, the United Nations will move one step closer to an international response to the threat from near Earth objects (NEOs).

Asteroid Telescope First Light

Bruce Betts • August 16, 2013

Using a Shoemaker NEO Grant a new telescope is operating in Illinois to do asteroid tracking.

Determining Near Earth Asteroids’ Properties from the California Desert

Bruce Betts • August 05, 2013

Shoemaker NEO Grant winner Bob Stephens specializes in lightcurves of near Earth asteroids to determine their physical properties. Here is an update on recent progress using his 2013 Planetary Society grant. This is the first in a series of updates on Shoemaker NEO Grant winners.

Laser Bees Papers

Bruce Betts • July 11, 2013

For those wishing to bore into more details of our Laser Bees project itself, graduate student Alison Gibbings from the University of Strathclyde has sent their technical paper that resulted from the 2013 Planetary Defense Conference.

Found a Killer Asteroid? Who Ya Gonna Call?

Mat Kaplan • July 08, 2013

Astronomer Timothy Spahr directs the Minor Planet Center, the global clearinghouse for asteroids, comets and other relatively small objects in the solar system, including moons. He also coordinates the Society's Shoemaker NEO grant program.

Planetary Defense Conference 2013 Part 3

Bruce Betts • June 12, 2013

Part 3 of Bruce Betts' wrap up from the Planetary Defense Conference 2013 focuses on the Laser Bees (asteroid deflection method) project and Laser Bees researcher Alison Gibbings.

Say "hi!" to asteroid -- actually, asteroids -- (285263) 1998 QE2

Emily Lakdawalla • May 30, 2013

A large asteroid is passing reasonably close to Earth in a few hours, and astronomers at the great radio telescopes at Goldstone and Arecibo are zapping it. The latest discovery: QE2, like many asteroids, is a binary.

Planetary Defense Conference 2013 Part 2

Bruce Betts • May 29, 2013

Second part of a three part wrap up to April's Planetary Defense Conference: a report on Planetary Shoemaker NEO Grant related activities and people at the Planetary Defense Conference 2013

Planetary Defense Conference 2013 Part 1

Bruce Betts • May 24, 2013

First part of a 3 part wrap up to April's Planetary Defense Conference: a very brief review of the status of research in asteroid threat related fields based on the conference, report on special activities at the conference, and links to video and audio related to the conference.

ISIS: Blasting a Crater on Asteroid Bennu

Van Kane • May 16, 2013

An exciting new option to enhance NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid mission has been proposed by Steve Chesley at JPL. The ISIS spacecraft would impact asteroid Bennu to expose its interior structure to OSIRIS-REx.

Saving the Planet can be Exciting!

Mat Kaplan • May 07, 2013

Planetary Radio for the week of May 6 visits the Planetary Defense Conference one last time to join a "tabletop" simulation of a killer asteroid threat.

An Amazing Evening for Planetary Defense

Mat Kaplan • April 23, 2013

Bill Nye, Bruce Betts, Mat Kaplan, Meteorite Man Geoffrey Notkin and stars of planetary science at the Planetary Defense Conference public event in Flagstaff.

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