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

Selfies, messages and names delivered for LightSail 2 flight

Jason Davis • March 29, 2016

A miniature DVD containing images of space fans and names of Planetary Society members and supporters is ready to fly in space.

Rulers in space! LightSail 2 equipped with boom fiducials

Jason Davis • March 14, 2016 • 2

How will we tell if LightSail 2's booms are fully deployed? With fiducials—visual reference guides that feature our signature Planetary Society logo.

Meet LightSail 2, The Planetary Society's new solar sailing CubeSat

Jason Davis • February 29, 2016 • 1

The Planetary Society's solar sailing CubeSat has a new designation: LightSail 2. To celebrate the name change, we're releasing a new video showing footage from a late January sail deployment at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

First Look: Newest LightSail Spacecraft Unfurls Solar Sails

Jason Davis • January 29, 2016 • 3

The Planetary Society's LightSail spacecraft successfully deployed its solar sails Thursday, wrapping up an initial round of system-level tests to prepare the CubeSat for flight.

Upgraded LightSail Software Completes First Round of Flight Testing

Jason Davis • January 26, 2016 • 2

LightSail has completed its first round of flight testing. The spacecraft is now armed with new software that will transmit almost three times as much health and status data back to Earth than it did during last year's test flight.

LightSail Program Wraps Busy Year with Test Readiness Review

Jason Davis • December 17, 2015

On Monday, LightSail engineers and mission managers met at The Planetary Society's Pasadena, California headquarters to prepare for a rigorous suite of spacecraft tests that are expected to begin in January.

In Pictures: LightSail Cameras Prepped for Flight

Jason Davis • November 25, 2015 • 2

LightSail's flight cameras are being prepped for installation after receiving a software upgrade and checkout from their manufacturer.

LightSail Deployer Passes Prox-1 Fit Check

Jason Davis • October 26, 2015

At Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo engineers loaded a P-POD replica into the partially assembled frame of the Prox-1 spacecraft. The meetup was a fit check to make sure the two pieces of hardware fit together as designed.

LightSail and Prox-1 Start Testing and Integration Process

Jason Davis • October 16, 2015

On opposite sides of the United States, teams are starting the testing process to prepare two spacecraft for a one-of-a-kind in-space rendezvous.

LightSail Gets Backup Burn Wire for 2016 Mission

Jason Davis • September 25, 2015 • 3

LightSail's burn wire, the mission-critical component responsible for releasing the spacecraft's solar panels, will get a backup ahead of next year's solar sailing mission.

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