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What We Know About the Russian Meteor Event [UPDATED]

Heidi Hammel • February 15, 2013

Preliminary estimates show that the meteoroid was 15 meters wide and weighed roughly 8000 tons. The resulting airburst would have the equivalent yield of about a 1/2 megaton explosion.

An evening that brought me very close to Curiosity

Damia Bouic • February 15, 2013

Damien Bouic received some well-deserved recognition from the Chemcam team for his great Curiosity image processing work.

BREAKING: Meteor fall causes damage in Russia [UPDATED]

Emily Lakdawalla • February 15, 2013

A large meteor streaked through the skies above Russia on the morning of Feb 15th, causing a deafening sonic boom that shattered windows and injured hundreds.

The Sequester Will Cut NASA Science by an Additional $52 million

Casey Dreier • February 14, 2013

Brand new information about the effects of the across-the-board cuts known as Sequestration, if they were to be enacted.

Planetary Society Weekly Hangout, Thu Feb 14 1200PT/2000UT: Courtney Dressing

Emily Lakdawalla • February 14, 2013

Emily Lakdawalla and Courtney Dressing talked about just how common Earth-sized exoplanets may be in our neighborhood. Watch the replay here.

Why can Hubble get detailed views of distant galaxies but not of Pluto?

Emily Lakdawalla • February 14, 2013

How come Hubble's pictures of galaxies billions of light years away are so beautifully detailed, yet the pictures of Pluto, which is so much closer, are just little blobs? I get asked this question, or variations of it, a lot. Here's an explainer.

A forgotten image of Earth and the Moon

Emily Lakdawalla • February 13, 2013

While researching another story, I came across an image I don't remember ever seeing before, of a moonrise from an unexpected source.

What Has NASA Done for Me Lately?

Casey Dreier • February 13, 2013

NASA released its Spinoff 2012 report, detailing the numerous technology transfers, inventions, and economic impact by the U.S. space program.

Field Report From Mars: Sol 3215-3219 - February 6-13, 2013

Larry Crumpler • February 13, 2013

We have been seeing lots of small light-colored veins crossing through the outcrops here on Matijevic Hill, and we have tried to get a handle on the composition of these veins by doing multiple offsets with the APXS. It appears that the small veins are calcium sulfate, as best we can determine.

JPL's Mohawk Guy Invited to Attend the State of the Union Address, Despite Cuts to Planetary Exploration

Casey Dreier • February 12, 2013

Bobak "Mohawk Guy" Ferdowsi of JPL will join First Lady Michelle Obama as a guest at today's State of the Union address.

Washington Update

Bill Nye • February 11, 2013

Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson spoke to the House Science committee about the importance of space and scientific research. Bill Nye also visited with Congressman Culberson and Congressman Wolf's chief of staffabout supporting NASA's Planetary Science Program.

New Contest: Name the Moons of Pluto!

Emily Lakdawalla • February 11, 2013

The discoverers of Pluto's fourth and fifth moons are inviting the public to vote on (and write in candidates for) their formal names. Voting closes in two weeks.

The Earth is a Planet: Why We Explore Space

Bill Dunford • February 11, 2013

Why spend effort and scarce resources on space exploration when we have so many problems here at home? Turns out, there are some pretty good reasons.

Browsing Landsat data is a lot easier than I thought it was

Emily Lakdawalla • February 08, 2013

With the Landsat Data Continuity Mission scheduled to launch on Monday, there's been a lot of Tweeting about Landsat, and through one such Tweet I learned about a resource that I hadn't known existed before: the LandsatLook Viewer. This is a graphical interface to more than a decade worth of Landsat data, a tremendous resource for anyone interested in Earth's changing surface, natural or manmade.

Pretty picture: tessera terrain on Venus

Emily Lakdawalla • February 07, 2013

In which I dive into the Magellan radar data set and come up with some images of an unusual and possibly unique solar system terrain: tessera.

Planetary Society Hangout Thursday Feb 7th at 12:00 PST/20:00 UT: Snow and Ice on Mars with Paul Hayne

Casey Dreier • February 07, 2013

Join us this week as we feature our guest, Dr. Paul Hayne from JPL. Dr. Hayne studies snow and ice on Mars, extreme temperatures of the Moon, and is on the Cassini science team. He also founded the group Young Scientists for Planetary Exploration to help organize early-career scientists to be aware of the politics of space.

Mars Exploration Rover Update: Opportunity Quietly Completes 9 Years Uncovering More Evidence of Water

A.J.S. Rayl • February 06, 2013

With its robot nose to the Martian grindstone, Opportunity completed its ninth year of working on Mars in January, making another significant science discovery in tiny white veins on Matijevic Hill as the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission rolled on into Year 10.

My Free Online College Intro Astronomy Class Starts Today

Bruce Betts • February 06, 2013

Bruce Betts is teaching online Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy at California State University Dominguez Hill again in 2013. You can watch live or archived.

Tell Us How Planetary Science Is Cheap, Be Entered to Win

Casey Dreier • February 06, 2013

Submit an entry comparing the cost of Planetary Science at NASA to...anything. You'll be entered to win a prize. Exploring the solar system costs less than many people think, let's give everyone food for thought.

Sequestration and Planetary Exploration (updated)

Van Kane • February 05, 2013

The latest news in the United States is that a poison pill known as the Sequester is looking increasingly likely. If it happens, it will be a body blow to NASA’s planetary science program.

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