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Multimedia roundup: Blue Origin completes two-parachute test flight

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/20 12:30 CDT | 6 comments

Yesterday in West Texas, Blue Origin launched its New Shepard spacecraft on its sixth suborbital test flight. The capsule normally descends using three parachutes, but on Sunday, just two were used to show the spacecraft could still land safely in the event of a parachute mishap.

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Picture-perfect landing for Soyuz crew on sunny Kazakh steppe

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/18 09:10 CDT | 4 comments

Tim Kopra, Tim Peake and Yuri Malenchenko are back on Earth this morning following a picture-perfect landing on the sunny Kazakhstan steppe.

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Night owl? Early bird? Watch a Soyuz crew plunge back to Earth Saturday morning

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/17 01:41 CDT | 1 comments

Tomorrow morning, Tim Kopra, Tim Peake and Yuri Malenchenko are coming home from the International Space Station. But if you live in the United States or Europe, you're going to have to get up pretty early—or stay up late—to see it happen.

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Timeline of Juno Jupiter Orbit Insertion events

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/16 02:55 CDT | 1 comments

Today NASA held a press briefing and released a press kit for the impending orbit insertion of the Juno spacecraft. The 35-minute orbit insertion burn is scheduled to begin July 5 at 03:18 UTC (July 4 20:18, PDT). Here's a timeline for events relating to orbit insertion.

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ExoMars sights Mars

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/16 12:26 CDT

Today ESA released ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter's first photo of Mars, taken from a distance of 41 million kilometers. It's no more detail than you can get through a pair of a binoculars, just a little taste of what's to come.

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Multimedia roundup: Falcon 9 makes dual-satellite delivery run

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/15 06:41 CDT

SpaceX placed two communications satellites into orbit today, but the company's attempt to go four-in-a-row on first stage drone ship recoveries fell short.

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Curiosity update, sols 1311-1369: Drilling at Lubango, Okoruso, and Oudam, and a turn to the south

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/15 05:24 CDT | 1 comments

Curiosity is at a turning point in its mission to Mount Sharp, both literally and figuratively. Having drilled at three sample sites in 7 weeks, the rover took a left turn, changing its trajectory from a generally westward driving path to a southward one. It is now poised to cross the Bagnold dune field at Murray buttes.

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Scientists play with fire aboard trash-filled cargo spacecraft

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/14 05:42 CDT | 1 comments

This afternoon, NASA started a fire aboard a trash-filled cargo spacecraft, but it was all in the name of science. Engineers at the agency's Glenn Research Center are studying how large-scale fires spread in space.

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Nadia Drake: NSF investigating how to shut down Arecibo

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/13 03:28 CDT | 8 comments

Reporter Nadia Drake has been following the status of Arecibo very closely, and recently wrote two articles explaining what it means that the National Science Foundation has begun an environmental review process for the giant radio telescope.

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Video: Two talks featuring pretty pictures from space

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/10 01:30 CDT | 1 comments

Videos of two recent talks I've given, one intended for a general audience and one aimed at professionals.

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Red Dragon and Planetary Exploration

Posted by Van Kane on 2016/06/10 12:07 CDT | 5 comments

If SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft becomes a standard catalog item that could ordered, the way a launch vehicle is, what might the impact be on planetary exploration?

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LightSail 2 will transmit Morse code from space, and you can make the sound your ringtone

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/10 06:30 CDT | 2 comments

The Planetary Society's LightSail 2 (.-.. / ... / ..---) spacecraft will identify itself from orbit using Morse code, and you can make the sound your ringtone.

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What to expect from JunoCam at Jupiter

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/09 09:37 CDT | 16 comments

Juno will go in to orbit at Jupiter on July 5 (July 4 in North and South American time zones), and it's carrying a camera that's going to take really awesome photos of Jupiter. But you're going to have to be patient. Emily Lakdawalla explains why.

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Dawn Journal: In the Details

Posted by Marc Rayman on 2016/06/08 06:33 CDT | 6 comments

Dawn is continuing to record the extraordinary sights on dwarf planet Ceres. The experienced explorer is now closer to the alien world than the International Space Station is to Earth.

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Whither the Weather? A Jet Stream Explainer

Posted by Anna Scott on 2016/06/07 11:01 CDT | 4 comments

Jet streams are found in planetary atmospheres throughout our solar system. But what exactly are they?

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Take a look inside the station's new expandable module with astronaut Jeff Williams

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/06 12:55 CDT

BEAM, the International Space Station's new expandable habitat module, is open for business. NASA astronaut Jeff Williams and cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka entered the module at 4:47 a.m. EDT (9:47 UTC) this morning.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Scuffs Up Signs of Past Water at Marathon Valley
Sols 4362 - 4391

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2016/06/06 09:24 CDT

Opportunity spent the first half of May digging into an outcrop, taking dozens of panoramic images from her site on the south wall of Marathon Valley at Endeavour Crater’s western rim, and basking in the Martian spring weather.

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Announcing Planetary Radio: Space Policy Edition
New episodes monthly

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2016/06/03 03:46 CDT | 2 comments

Announcing Planetary Radio Extra: Space Policy Edition (PRE:SPE for short)—a new spinoff of Planetary Radio that will delve into the weeds of space policy and politics.

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Follow a space shuttle tank through LA with this timelapse video

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/06/03 08:06 CDT

This timelapse video follows some of the space shuttle external tank's 19-hour journey from Marina del Rey to the California Science Center in Los Angeles.

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What's up in the solar system, June 2016 edition: Juno approaches Jupiter

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/06/01 05:23 CDT | 5 comments

Your monthly roundup of the adventures of the 20+ robots exploring our solar system.

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