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Calling (Really Serious) Asteroid Hunters

Bruce Betts • November 19, 2012

I am happy to announce a new call for proposals for The Planetary Society’s Gene Shoemaker Near Earth Object (NEO) grant program, which is celebrating its 15th Anniversary. Proposals are due Feb. 4, 2013.

Curiosity sol 102 update: Eppur si muove

Emily Lakdawalla • November 19, 2012

Curiosity is a rover again at last! She was parked at the dune named Rocknest for 40 sols, from sol 60 through 99. On sol 100, she drove right on top of the dune, obliterating her five scoop marks. Then on sol 102 she took a good long, 35-meter drive so that she's now right on the edge of the "high thermal inertia unit" that attracted her to the spot the team has named Glenelg.

The latest issue of Planetary Report is available online!

Donna Stevens • November 17, 2012

The September Solstice 2012 issue of The Planetary Report is now available online for members who prefer to get their magazine electronically. I’m especially proud of this issue because of its broad scope—it celebrates our past and peers into our future as a spacefaring species.

Dawn Vesta Data is publicly available (for real this time!)

Emily Lakdawalla • November 16, 2012

After a false start earlier this year, the first chunk of Dawn Framing Camera data from Vesta has finally made it to the Planetary Data System. As a first step to understanding the data set, I've built some index pages to these cool images.

Save Our Science: November Update

Casey Dreier • November 15, 2012

We've sent over sixteen thousand of emails to the president, but we need more.

Visiting Viking at Seattle's Museum of Flight

Tom Dahl • November 14, 2012

One of the nicest aerospace museums in the United States is the Museum of Flight, outside Seattle, Washington. I traveled cross-country in order to visit the "Flight Capsule 3" Viking lander, a backup unit that was never completed. Its partially built state exposes its internal structures, making it a boon to study.

A Night To Remember: Celebrating Carl Sagan

Mat Kaplan • November 13, 2012

On the evening of November 9, which would have been Carl Sagan's 78th birthday, the Planetary Society brought together some of his best friends to share their memories. We were also joined by four young scientists whose career choices were influenced by Carl.

Pretty picture: Landsat view of southern Greenland

Björn Jónsson • November 13, 2012

This is a very large (19000 pixels square) mosaic of the fjords and glaciers of southern Greenland. I had been interested for a long time in experimenting with the processing of Earth satellite imagery just to get a comparison to the other planets.

What We're Fighting For

Casey Dreier • November 13, 2012

We're fighting for the restoration of NASA's planetary sciences budget to return to its 2012 level. What does that get us? New financial analysis from our sources in the scientific community provides us a glimpse.

A spectacular calendar for 2013

Emily Lakdawalla • November 13, 2012

Steve Cariddi's Year in Space wall calendar crams an incredible variety of information into a beautiful, large wall calendar that is great for grownups, kids, or classrooms.

Carl Sagan: "If membership is restricted to men, the loss will be ours."

Emily Lakdawalla • November 13, 2012

When Casey invited me to participate in last Friday's "Sagan Slam," I wasn't sure what I would read, but I found a great letter of his explaining why women, as well as men, should be considered among the world's great explorers.

The First-Ever Sagan Slam

Casey Dreier • November 12, 2012

The world's first Sagan Slam was embraced by an open, positive, and engaged crowd. We spoke, rhymed, read, and remembered Carl while drinking cosmos and getting to know each other.

Up Goer Five

Emily Lakdawalla • November 12, 2012

In a stroke of pure genius, Randall Munroe of the web comic XKCD describes "Up Goer Five" with the ten hundred most commonly used words in the English language.

Join Our Sagan Celebration

Mat Kaplan • November 09, 2012

The Planetary Society has invited a few friends of Carl Sagan's to a celebration of his birth and his legacy. Watch the live webcast featuring physicist Kip Thorne, Contact Executive Producer Lynda Obst and much more!

Beautiful butterfly crater on Mars (another HiWish granted!)

Emily Lakdawalla • November 08, 2012

I asked Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to take a photo, and it turned out better than I had imagined: an incredibly fresh, well-preserved, dramatically rayed oblique impact crater.

Cosmoquest Science Hour, Wednesday: Take a taste of Mars with Pamela Conrad, Curiosity SAM Instrument Deputy PI

Emily Lakdawalla • November 07, 2012

This week's Cosmoquest Astronomy Hour Google+ Hangout at 1600 PDT / 2300 UTC on Wednesday will feature Pamela Conrad, the deputy principal investigator for Curiosity's Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument. Tune in to learn more about how this experiment will change our view of Mars, and to ask your questions!

Write the President: Re-election Edition

Casey Dreier • November 07, 2012

We've had a great response to this advocacy push so far. Now that the President has been re-elected, our messages are even more important. Write today if you haven't, and spread to the word to your friends.

Curiosity, Endeavour, and Bill Nye on Your Phone

Mat Kaplan • November 07, 2012

This week's Planetary Radio episode presents highlights of the first Curiosity press briefing about the Martian atmosphere, and then takes you to the opening day ceremony for Shuttle Endeavour. You have till Friday, November 9, at 10am Pacific to send your 10th anniversary message to the show and possibly win Bill Nye on your answering machine.

Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Begins Reconnaissance of Matijevic Hill

A.J.S. Rayl • November 06, 2012

After spending much of October driving around and taking pictures on Matijevic Hill, Opportunity hunkered down for Halloween and spent the holiday quietly, staying out of mischief's way and the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) mission roved another month closer to its ninth anniversary of working on the surface of the Red Planet.

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.

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