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Our journalists and guest bloggers bring you stunning imagery and the space stories that matter most.

Knots on Mars

David J. Fred • September 05, 2012 • 3

It might surprise most people to learn that multitudes of knots tied in cords and thin ribbons have probably traveled on every interplanetary mission ever flown. If human civilization ends tomorrow, interplanetary landers, orbiters, and deep space probes will preserve evidence of both the oldest and newest of human technologies for thousands, if not millions of years.

Sampling Mars, Part 4: Commissioning the Rover and Sampling System

Daniel Limonadi • August 22, 2012 • 10

Completing a multi-part guest blog series by Curiosity systems engineering team lead for the Surface Sampling and Science system. Part 4 explains the lengthy process of testing and using the system for the first time.

Sampling Mars, Part 3: Key Challenges in Drilling for Samples

Daniel Limonadi • August 21, 2012

Continuing a multi-part guest blog series by Curiosity systems engineering team lead for the Surface Sampling and Science system. Part 3 explains why drilling is hard, and what the team is doing to prevent things from going wrong.

Sampling Mars, Part 2: Science Instruments SAM and Chemin

Daniel Limonadi • August 20, 2012 • 5

Continuing a multi-part guest blog series by Curiosity systems engineering team lead for the Surface Sampling and Science system. Part 2 explains the science instruments SAM and Chemin.

Sampling Mars, Part 1: The Hardware

Daniel Limonadi • August 16, 2012 • 3

The opening of a multi-part guest blog series by Curiosity systems engineering team lead for the Surface Sampling and Science system. Part 1 explains the robotic arm and the Sample Acquisition, Processing and Handling subsystem.

See What's NEXT for Humanity

Mat Kaplan • August 16, 2012 • 5

A new monthly series of Southern California Public Radio events begins with a look at how intelligent machines and virtual humans will change what it means to be a real human. Attend or watch the live webcast tonight, Thursday, August 16.

Curiosity's MAHLI camera: Much more than a microscopic imager

Emily Lakdawalla • August 07, 2012 • 3

Today's press briefing featured the first image from MAHLI, the Mars Hand Lens Imager, so it's time for me to dive in to this camera's capabilities.

Videos: Where are Curiosity's science instruments and how do they work?

Emily Lakdawalla • August 01, 2012 • 2

Mat Kaplan and I recently recorded a couple of videos giving a tour of the science instruments on the Curiosity Mars rover.

The Planetary Report, June 2012: Dark Skies?

Emily Lakdawalla • July 25, 2012

The June Solstice issue of our member magazine The Planetary Report is out! The feature article, by W. Scott Kardel of the International Dark-Sky Association, looks at the ecological, economic, and philosophical problem of light pollution. My inside-the-cover Snapshots from Space features image processing work by Gordan Ugarkovic. Bill Nye's Planetary Society Kids section shows you how to build your own MarsDial, and on its back page I share some weird and interesting facts about Mars' moons.

Curiosity's seventeenth camera: MARDI

Emily Lakdawalla • July 20, 2012 • 4

Curiosity is equipped with seventeen cameras. One of them, the Mars Descent Imager (MARDI) will capture a movie as the rover descends to the surface.

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