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Blog Archive

 

Amazing photos of tiny moons as Cassini orbits among the rings

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2017/01/19 12:39 CST | 1 comments

Behold: Daphnis, the tiny, 8-kilometer moon that orbits within a ring gap, gently tugging on the edges of the gap to create delicate scallops.

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Here's what history has to say about when Trump's NASA administrator will take office

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/19 06:04 CST | 4 comments

This Friday, Charles Bolden resigns as NASA administrator after a stint of 2,744 days. Robert Lightfoot, the agency's highest-ranking civil servant, will take over as acting admin. How long will Lightfoot serve? If history serves as a guide, it could be a while.

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Want to build on our LightSail work? Here are some resources to get started

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/13 10:30 CST | 3 comments

The Planetary Society is launching a new webpage showcasing LightSail academic papers, schematics, parts and imagery.

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Blitzing Congress for NASA
Or, How I Spent My Day Off in DC

Posted by Bill Gowan on 2017/01/12 11:40 CST

Last February, a group called the Space Exploration Alliance held their annual "legislative blitz," walking the halls of Congress to sway lawmakers toward increased support for NASA's 2017 budget.

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CYGNSS Launch: The Human Side

Posted by John Noonan on 2017/01/11 11:36 CST | 1 comments

What is it like behind the scenes before, during, and after the launch of a spacecraft?

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Hidden Figures: Triumphant in the theater, sobering after

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2017/01/10 06:48 CST | 5 comments

Go see Hidden Figures, and bring your kids. Despite its serious subject matter, the movie is joyful, often funny, and, in the end, triumphant.

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SpaceX is ready to fly rockets again. An expert talks about the reason a Falcon 9 blew up last year

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/10 06:02 CST | 40 comments

SpaceX says they fixed a problem with the helium pressurization system that destroyed a Falcon 9 rocket last year. The company pushes the boundaries of rocket science, creating an occasional jaw-dropping fireball in the process. But will the risk-reward equation change when SpaceX starts flying astronauts?

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Lucy and Psyche Asteroid Missions

Posted by Van Kane on 2017/01/09 10:49 CST | 9 comments

Last week, NASA selected its thirteenth and fourteenth missions in its low cost Discovery program.

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Saturn's Ring Particles

Posted by Judy Schmidt on 2017/01/05 01:10 CST | 1 comments

Artist and astrophotographer Judy Schmidt brings us a view from within the rings of Saturn.

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NASA is visiting 8 asteroids in 8 years. Here are 8 things to know about the missions

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/04 04:33 CST | 12 comments

NASA announced two new asteroid missions today named Lucy and Psyche that will fill important gaps in our understanding of how the solar system was formed. Here are eight things to know about the two missions.

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Mystery of Russia’s doomed Progress spacecraft may delay next ISS crew launch

Posted by Anatoly Zak on 2017/01/04 06:00 CST | 2 comments

More than a month after a Progress spacecraft bound for the International Space Station plunged to the ground during a botched launch attempt, investigators are still unable to clear its rocket to carry future ISS crews.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Wraps 2016, Heads into 2017 Toward 13th Anniversary

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2017/01/04 01:04 CST

As 2016 came to an end and 2017 rang in, Opportunity was working the first leg of the ascent up the rugged western rim of Endeavour Crater on her way to an ancient gully, the next scientific tour de force down the road, and the mission was closing in on its 13th anniversary of surface operations coming up in the New Year.

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Dawn Journal: Looking Back, Looking Forward

Posted by Marc Rayman on 2017/01/03 02:40 CST | 1 comments

Dawn is concluding a remarkable year of exploring dwarf planet Ceres. Chief Engineer and Mission Manager Marc Rayman brings us his latest update.

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A company you've never heard of plans to build the world's first private space station

Posted by Jason Davis on 2017/01/03 06:00 CST | 9 comments

Axiom Space, a recently formed company headed by former ISS program manager Mike Suffredini, plans to send an astronaut to the ISS in 2019 and connect a large multipurpose habitat there in 2020.

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Spaceflight in 2017, part 2: Robots beyond Earth orbit

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/12/30 12:22 CST | 4 comments

What's ahead for our intrepid space explorers in 2017? It'll be the end of Cassini, but not before the mission performs great science close to the rings. OSIRIS-REx will fly by Earth, and Chang'e 5 will launch to the Moon, as a host of other spacecraft continue their ongoing missions.

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Spaceflight in 2017, part 1: Earth-centric edition

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/29 06:04 CST | 19 comments

Our preview of spaceflight in 2017 starts with highlights of missions and events happening on and around our home planet.

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On Cosmic Discovery and Human Significance

Posted by Jake Rosenthal on 2016/12/28 10:04 CST | 11 comments

Jake Rosenthal takes us on a tour of the history of discovery of our place in the cosmos.

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China outlines its space exploration ambitions
Missions to the Moon and Mars will dominate China's focus

Posted by Andrew Jones on 2016/12/27 02:04 CST | 1 comments

China released a new white paper on its policy and activities in space, outlining ambitious deep space exploration, human spaceflight and space science projects as major priorities for the years up to 2020 and beyond.

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GOES-R: What’s Next?

Posted by Heather Hunter on 2016/12/23 05:30 CST | 1 comments

After a series of maneuvers in-orbit, GOES-R—now known as GOES-16—has reached its designated location in space. What happens next?

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Review: ‘Rogue One’ is Star Wars comfort food

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/12/22 06:02 CST | 6 comments

In a review of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Jason Davis says you're more likely to enjoy the film if you embrace it as comfort food—a story line that fits into a larger sequence of Star Wars events you already know.

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