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

Solar sailing in Japan: 10 questions for LightSail engineer Barbara Plante

Jason Davis • February 13, 2017 • 1

Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye and LightSail systems engineer Barbara Plante recently traveled to Japan for a solar sailing symposium. Our Q&A with Plante discusses everything from CubeSat attitude control systems to robotic giraffes in Tokyo.

See LightSail at the London Science Museum

Erin Greeson • February 07, 2017

The London Science Museum, one of the world’s leading science centers, has welcomed our citizen-funded spacecraft into its halls.

Want to build on our LightSail work? Here are some resources to get started

Jason Davis • January 13, 2017 • 4

The Planetary Society is launching a new webpage showcasing LightSail academic papers, schematics, parts and imagery.

Ground finale? Deployment test moves LightSail 2 closer to handoff

Jason Davis • December 06, 2016 • 2

LightSail 2 successfully demonstrated all of its critical functions during what may have been the CubeSat's final end-to-end systems test at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

LightSail 2 update roundup: Testing, delivery and a new animation in the works

Jason Davis • October 07, 2016 • 4

LightSail 2 and Prox-1 are expected to meet for integration by the end of the year. Here's an update roundup, including a sneak peek of new animations and the abstract from a recently accepted paper on the spacecraft's attitude control system.

Back to school: LightSail 2 and Prox-1 provide unique experience for university students

Jason Davis • August 08, 2016

From Cal Poly to Georgia Tech, university students working on SmallSat projects gain critical real-world spaceflight experience, preparing them for promising careers in the space industry.

Videos and updates: LightSail 2 shows off magnetic personality

Jason Davis • July 13, 2016 • 3

It's been a few weeks since LightSail 2 passed its day-in-the-life test at Cal Poly. Here's a roundup of updates that were made in response to the test results, and a look at the project's next steps.

LightSail 2 will transmit Morse code from space, and you can make the sound your ringtone

Jason Davis • June 10, 2016 • 2

The Planetary Society's LightSail 2 (.-.. / ... / ..---) spacecraft will identify itself from orbit using Morse code, and you can make the sound your ringtone.

Mostly smooth sailing in San Luis Obispo: LightSail 2 completes day-in-the-life test

Jason Davis • May 24, 2016 • 7

The Planetary Society's LightSail 2 spacecraft breezed through a major systems test today, demonstrating the CubeSat can successfully deploy its antenna and solar panels, communicate with the ground, and unfurl its 32-square-meter solar sails in space.

On LightSail 1 launch anniversary, team prepares successor craft for day-in-the-life test

Jason Davis • May 20, 2016 • 1

One year ago today, LightSail 1 rode an Atlas V rocket into space. Now, the program stands on the brink of another major milestone, as engineers prepare for a full systems test of LightSail 2, a successor CubeSat that will attempt the first controlled solar sail flight in low-Earth orbit.

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