Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/31 04:00 CDT
We have photo proof that the multi-step process of the deployment of IKAROS' square solar sail is going according to plan!
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/28 08:05 CDT
I wrote some time ago about the expectations for the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE)'s contributions to solar system science. A couple of days ago, JPL posted an image and movie documenting the progress to date.
Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/05/27 12:00 CDT
The LightSail 1 spacecraft development is proceeding well. Our engineering team has completed crucial milestones to building the vehicle that will demonstrate the value and potential of using sunlight alone to propel exploratory craft through space.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/27 07:24 CDT
As I discussed on Monday, Opportunity is in the middle of a lengthy trek toward a crater named Endeavour and its tantalizing upraised smectite-bearing rim.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/21 05:34 CDT
Yesterday the Jet Propulsion Laboratory formally announced the launch dates chosen for Curiosity, the next generation Mars rover also known as Mars Science Laboratory.
Posted by Louis D. Friedman on 2010/05/20 11:00 CDT
The new joint statement by space organizations representing a large segment of the science and space-interest community, including The Planetary Society, is a terrific endorsement for the 2011 budget proposal for NASA.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/20 05:44 CDT
It was a picture-perfect launch for three Venus-bound spacecraft this morning: the Akatsuki Venus orbiter, the IKAROS solar sail, and a university-built minisat named UNITEC-1.
Posted by Charlene Anderson on 2010/05/19 04:51 CDT
It's the hottest debate I've seen in 30 years of following space policy -- this uproar over NASA's proposed FY 2011 budget.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/19 10:26 CDT
Today is sol 2,246 of Opportunity's mission to Mars; as I write, it's just before 7:00 local solar time. If this sol passes, as her previous 2,245 have done, with Opportunity still alive and speaking to Earth, she will have surpassed a record set on November 12, 1982: Opportunity will pass Viking Lander 1 as the longest-lived landed Mars mission.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/19 01:05 CDT
Every time I think Cassini has captured the coolest image of Enceladus ever, it does better.
Posted by Charlene Anderson on 2010/05/18 08:07 CDT
Hollywood and Science are not congenial colleagues. When their paths cross, as they so often do in science-fiction films, each feels the other must give way to the cultural absolutes of their different tribes.
Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2010/05/18 05:48 CDT
Cassini flew within 436 kilometers of Enceladus' surface today. Although it's Cassini's 11th targeted flyby of Enceladus, these close buzzes are never routine.