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Blog Archive

 

Testing Sail Deployment

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2011/03/06 11:00 CST | 1 comments

The first full scale deployment of the Planetary Society's LightSail-1 solar sail was conducted on March 4, 2011 at Stellar Exploration in San Luis Obispo, California.

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LightSail-1 on NASA Short List for Upcoming Launch

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2011/02/09 11:00 CST

NASA announced that the Planetary Society’s LightSail-1 solar sail mission is on their short list for upcoming launch opportunities. The missions selected are Cubesats destined for piggyback launches as part of NASA's CubeSat Launch Initiative.

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Stardust Contest: "Are We There Yet?"

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2011/02/01 09:44 CST

There's a new Planetary Society contest: "Are We There Yet? -- Measuring Stardust's Cosmic Journey." How far do you think Stardust will have traveled to get to Tempel 1? Guess here and get a chance to win a cool T-shirt!

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Nanosail-D released into space

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2011/01/21 12:26 CST

NASA's Nanosail-D spacecraft surprised everyone, including its controllers, by suddenly deploying from its parent FASTSAT spacecraft and beginning its mission in space.

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We Make It Happen

Posted by Susan Lendroth on 2010/11/23 03:12 CST

Matt Lucking, our Regional Coordinator for the Bay Area Volunteers in northern California, shared a nice tribute to the Planetary Society — reminding us all how much the work we do matters.

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Stars Above, Earth Below Calendars and other space gifty goodies

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/11/22 04:09 CST

Ever since I first saw Tyler Nordgren's awe-inspiring photographs of the Milky Way arching above the natural wonders of the national parks, I knew I wanted them on my wall. Well, now I can get them, and you can too.

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A Marathon Day Two at the USA Science & Engineering Festival

Posted by Susan Lendroth on 2010/10/24 10:41 CDT

Day Two of the USA Science & Engineering Festival, and it started with a game of "dodge the marathoners."

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LightSail Update: The International Solar Sailing Symposium

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/10/01 12:00 CDT

Japan's IKAROS team stole the show at the International Solar Sailing Symposium in New York City, where they announced that their spacecraft had achieved controlled solar sail flight.

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Bill Nye Connects with Space People at IAC

Posted by Susan Lendroth on 2010/09/30 12:23 CDT

The 61st International Astronautical Congress (IAC)is being held in Prague in the Czech Republic, and Bill Nye is attending on behalf of the Planetary Society.

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Mars Climate Sounder Watches Mars Weather to Prepare for Curiosity Landing

Posted by David Kass on 2010/09/29 12:00 CDT

Two weeks ago Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) started a four-week campaign to support entry, descent, and landing phase for the next Mars rover, Mars Science Laboratory (or "Curiosity").

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Bill Nye Given the World(s)

Posted by Susan Lendroth on 2010/09/07 07:01 CDT

Lou Friedman handed off the keys to the Planetary Society -- and a few worlds as well -- to new Executive Director Bill Nye.

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Tracing the Big Picture of Mars' Atmosphere

Posted by Bruce Betts on 2010/08/26 12:00 CDT

One of the instruments on a 2016 mission to orbit Mars will provide daily maps of global, pole-to-pole, vertical distributions of the temperature, dust, water vapor and ice clouds in the Martian atmosphere.

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LightSail team learns from IKAROS successes

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/07/26 12:00 CDT

Last week, Bill Nye and I attended the International Solar Sail Symposium at the New York College of Technology.

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LightSail team learns from IKAROS successes

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/07/26 11:32 CDT

While we were in New York for the International Solar Sailing Symposium last week, we held a meeting with the Japanese IKAROS team to discuss technical results and issues in our two projects.

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Observing the Martian Atmosphere for Two Mars Years

Posted by David Kass on 2010/07/13 12:00 CDT

June 29, 2010 was the second Martian anniversary of the start of Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) observations at Mars.

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LightSail-1 Passes Critical Design Review

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/06/25 12:00 CDT | 1 comments

LightSail-1, the Planetary Society's new ultra-light Cubesat-based solar sail spacecraft, has passed its Critical Design Review.

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Firming Up the Spacecraft Design

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/05/27 12:00 CDT

The LightSail-1 spacecraft development is proceeding well. Our engineering team has completed crucial milestones to building the vehicle that will demonstrate the value and potential of using sunlight alone to propel exploratory craft through space.

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Stephen Hawking Receives Cosmos Award

Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/03/07 11:20 CST

The Planetary Society presented the Cosmos Award for Outstanding Public Presentation of Science to Stephen Hawking in Cambridge England on February 27.

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