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Blog Archive

 

A Sky Full of Stars

Bill Dunford • March 09, 2015

In pictures of the planets, the stars aren't usually visible. But when they do appear, they're spectacular.

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

Bruce Betts • February 04, 2015

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

The Moon, In Depth

Bill Dunford • January 20, 2015

Explore a new collection of 3D lunar landscapes.

Get an Up-Close Look at the Lunar Surface with These 3D Apollo Images

Jason Davis • December 26, 2014

3D images generated by the Apollo Lunar Surface Closeup Camera give you an idea of how it would look to crouch on the lunar surface with your spacesuit faceplate to the soil.

A new Chang'e 3 and Yutu image archive

Emily Lakdawalla • December 19, 2014

A treasure trove of newly released images from the Chang'e 3 program includes a photo sequence of a waxing Earth and lots of high-resolution views of rover and lander on the Moon.

Lunar Polar Volatile Puzzle

Deepak Dhingra • November 21, 2014

Deepak Dhingra gives an exciting update from the recent Lunar Exploration and Analysis Group (LEAG) meeting at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab (JHU-APL) in Baltimore.

From Mercury orbit, MESSENGER watches a lunar eclipse

Emily Lakdawalla • October 10, 2014

Watch as our enormous moon -- a quarter the diameter of the planet -- just winks out as it passes into Earth's long shadow, in an animation captured from more than 100 million kilometers away.

Two Eclipses in October

Bruce Betts • October 06, 2014

October 2014 brings big sky fun: a total lunar and partial solar eclipse, both visible from North America. The lunar eclipse will also be visible from most areas around the Pacific Ocean. Here is info on how to observe these eclipses.

45th Binghamton Geomorphology Symposium Report

Ted Stryk • September 23, 2014

The 45th Binghamton Geomorphology Symposium, usually focused on terrestrial studies, shifted this year to planetary science. Ted Stryk gives us an overview.

Landsat 8 Looks at the Supermoon

Jason Davis • July 29, 2014

Why did Landsat 8, an Earth-observing spacecraft, turn its unblinking eyes toward the July 12 supermoon?

Chang'e 3 update: Both rover and lander still alive at the end of their eighth lunar day

Emily Lakdawalla • July 21, 2014

Despite the fact that it hasn't moved for 6 months, the plucky Yutu rover on the Moon is still alive. Its signal is periodically detected by amateur radio astronomers, most recently on July 19. A story posted today by the Chinese state news agency offers a new hypothesis to explain the failure of the rover's mobility systems.

Trundling Across the Moon

Mark Robinson • July 11, 2014

High resolution images from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera detail the 1973 path of the Soviet rover Lunokhod 2.

Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's Ongoing Adventure

Samuel Lawrence • May 29, 2014

A few people think that when it comes to the Moon, because we’ve “been there, and done that,” there is nothing new left to discover. But that viewpoint could not be farther from the truth!

The Planetary Society Supports NASA's Asteroid Initiative

Casey Dreier • May 27, 2014

The Planetary Society strongly supports NASA's asteroid initiative, including the goal of redirecting an asteroid to the vicinity of the Moon. But an independent cost estimate is needed, and needed soon.

A new Earthrise over the Moon from Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's pushframe camera

Emily Lakdawalla • May 13, 2014

Earth's brilliant colors shine above the drab lunar horizon in this new "Earthrise" photo from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. An animation that accompanied the image release helped me to write an explainer on how pushframe cameras like Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's Wide-Angle Camera works.

Another Day in the Solar System

Bill Dunford • May 12, 2014

One day, five worlds.

Days before its crash, LADEE saw zodiacal light above the lunar horizon

Emily Lakdawalla • April 23, 2014

LADEE ended its mission as planned with a crash into the lunar surface on April 17. Just days prior, it turned its star tracker camera toward the lunar horizon and captured a striking series of images of the lunar sunrise and zodiacal light.

Forensic Ballistics: How Apollo 12 Helped Solve the Skydiver Meteorite Mystery

Philip Metzger • April 21, 2014

What can a 45-year-old mission to the Moon tell us about a "meteorite" flying past a skydiver on Earth?

The End of Opportunity and the Burden of Success

Casey Dreier • April 15, 2014

The Opportunity rover and the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter are both zeroed out in NASA's 2015 budget. Learn why these missions face the axe and why the White House is forcing NASA to choose between existing missions and starting new ones.

Yutu Update

Phil Stooke • April 10, 2014

We don’t hear a lot at the moment about Chang’E 3 and Yutu, the Chinese lander and rover which were all over the news a few months ago. But Phil Stooke has been collecting news online and in person last month at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference and now tries to put it all together and address the current state of the mission.

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