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Doing a science on Titan

Sarah Hörst • May 15, 2013

A tale from the scientific trenches: laboratory work to simulate Titan's rich atmosphere.

Planetary Society Weekly Hangout: Reports from the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference

Emily Lakdawalla • March 28, 2013

On Thursday at noon PDT / 1900 UTC I'll report on some of my favorite findings from LPSC, and answer your questions about the latest planetary science.

LPSC 2013: License to Chill (or, the solar system's icy moons)

Emily Lakdawalla • March 27, 2013

Reports from the March 19 session at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference covering eight icy moons in the outer solar system: Ganymede, Europa, Dione, Rhea, Mimas, Tethys, Enceladus, and Miranda.

Enceladus: A problem of contrast

Emily Lakdawalla • January 30, 2013

Time for my quarterly foray into the Cassini archival science data! The very first image I downloaded from the January 1, 2013 data release presented an interesting challenge to my image processing skill. I'll show you the pretty picture of Enceladus and then explain how I processed it.

Planetary Society Weekly Hangout, Thu Dec 20 1200PT/2000UT: Making Titan in the laboratory with Sarah Hörst

Emily Lakdawalla • December 19, 2012

Join us for our weekly Google+ Hangout Thursday at noon PT / 2000 UT. This week, I'm excited to have as a guest Sarah Hörst. Sarah is a postdoc at the University of Colorado whose current line of research involves experimental work on the complex atmospheric chemistry of Titan. She is also applying to be an astronaut!

Watching the slow shift of seasons on Titan

Emily Lakdawalla • November 06, 2012

A sharp-eyed amateur noticed two images of Titan taken 20 months apart from nearly exactly the same perspective, and they illustrate how the shifting of Saturn's seasons has brought change to Titan's atmosphere.

A huge color global view of Dione

Emily Lakdawalla • October 23, 2012

From the Cassini data archives comes a huge (5000 pixels square!) color image of Saturn's icy moon Dione, worth investigating from both near and far.

DPS 2012, Day 5: How to make asteroids crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle

Emily Lakdawalla • October 19, 2012

A summary of just one talk from the Division for Planetary Sciences meeting, by Lindy Elkins-Tanton, which provided a neat explanation for how asteroids can be melted and layered on the inside yet have a primitive-looking exterior.

DPS 2012, Tuesday: Titan's surface

Emily Lakdawalla • October 17, 2012

Tuesday morning at the Division of Planetary Sciences meeting featured talks on the surface composition and landforms on Titan, including lakes and "hot cross buns."

DPS 2012, Monday: Icy moons and a four-star exoplanet

Emily Lakdawalla • October 15, 2012

In the first full day of the annual meeting of the Division of Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society, I listened to scientific sessions on icy worlds and on an exoplanet in a four-star system.

Happy Cassini PDS Release Day!

Emily Lakdawalla • October 08, 2012

It's a quarterly feast day for me: the day that the Cassini mission delivers three months' worth of data to NASA's Planetary Data System. Here's a few images processed from the October 1, 2012 data release.

Sturzstroms on Saturn's Moon Iapetus

Kelsi Singer • October 01, 2012

Long-runout landslides (sturzstroms) are found across the Solar System. They have been observed primarily on Earth and Mars, but also on Venus, and Jupiter’s moons Io and Callisto. I have just published a paper about sturzstroms on Iapetus.

A couple of gems from the archives

Emily Lakdawalla • September 10, 2012

We're still working on migrating content from the old to the new website. This week, that means I am looking, one by one, through some great amateur-processed space images.

Pretty picture: Meet Tethys

Emily Lakdawalla • June 20, 2012

Just a pretty global view of one of Saturn's flock of icy moons, newly processed from archival data by Gordan Ugarkovic.

Pretty picture: Halo on a halo?

Emily Lakdawalla • June 15, 2012

An interesting set of images of Titan that Cassini took recently shows a peculiar cap at Titan's south pole.

Video: Saturn makes its own drama (with a little help)

Emily Lakdawalla • May 22, 2012

The apparently simple device of running Cassini images together like a flipbook makes for a dramatic movie, especially with the help of well-timed musical cues.

Methone, an egg in Saturn orbit?

Emily Lakdawalla • May 21, 2012

Cassini obtained its first high-resolution images of Methone on May 20, 2012. Methone is one of the smallest regular moons of Saturn, having a diameter of only about 3 kilometers. It was the first moon that Cassini discovered, very early in Cassini's mission at Saturn, in 2004.

Pretty pictures from Cassini's recent Dione flyby

Emily Lakdawalla • May 04, 2012

Cassini performed its last of three close encounters with Enceladus for 2012 two days ago, and followed the flyby with some spectacular images of Dione.

Titan, Dead or Alive? A Debate

Emily Lakdawalla • May 02, 2012

A lively discussion and debate between planetary polymaths Ralph Lorenz and Jeffrey Moore about Titan, hosted by the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, moderated by David Grinspoon.

Ski Helene?

Emily Lakdawalla • April 20, 2012

I enthused about these Helene images the first time they came down from Cassini, and then forgot about them, and then was thrilled anew a couple of weeks ago when Daniel Macháček posted his version, processed from data published by the Cassini imaging team on April 1.

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