Help Shape the Future of Space Exploration

Join The Planetary Society Now  arrow.png

Join our eNewsletter for updates & action alerts

    Please leave this field empty
Explore

Major Moons

We have completed reconnaissance missions to all eight of the planets, and will soon perform surveys of two dwarf planets, Ceres and Pluto. Among the most compelling targets for future flagship missions are the solar system's moons. Can we use Phobos as a base from which to tele-operate Mars missions? Is there prebiotic chemistry or even life within the buried oceans of Europa, Ganymede, or Enceladus, or in the methane-ethane rivers and lakes on Titan? What could we learn about the Kuiper belt by studying Neptune's captured moon Triton? What could human explorers do on our own Moon using technology developed over the last 40 years?

These questions drive interest in future missions among scientists, but it's an uphill battle to sell decisionmakers on the value of expensive missions to objects that are "only" moons. For us to capitalize on the successes of our reconnaissance missions, it is essential to educate the public about the reasons that other worlds' moons are so exciting, and that they are worlds every bit as worthy of study as the planets.

Recent Blog Entries about our Moon, Phobos, Europa, Ganymede, Enceladus, Titan, and Triton

China outlines its space exploration ambitions

Posted by Andrew Jones on 2016/12/27 02:04 CST | 1 comment

China released a new white paper on its policy and activities in space, outlining ambitious deep space exploration, human spaceflight and space science projects as major priorities for the years up to 2020 and beyond.

Read More »

Planetary discovery over the past quarter century

Posted by Steven Hauck on 2016/12/20 10:01 CST

2016 marks the 25th anniversary of the creation of what has become one of the primary venues for the publication of research in planetary science: the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. This occasion is a good opportunity to look back at what we have learned in this era of expanded exploration and to try to take a peek at the future.

Read More »

ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter takes in a rarely-imaged view of Phobos

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/12/15 04:55 CST | 2 comments

ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter's science team enjoyed the opportunity in November to test out their science instruments on Mars. One of the tests involved imaging Phobos from an unusual angle.

Read More »

TeamIndus Announces Launch Contract with ISRO

Posted by Sandhya Ramesh on 2016/12/01 04:45 CST | 3 comments

TeamIndus, India’s only entry for the Google Lunar XPRIZE, just announced their launch contract with ISRO. If successful, TeamIndus would be the first private company from India to land a craft on an extraterrestrial body.

Read More »

A week in the solar system

Posted by Jason Davis on 2016/11/10 05:45 CST | 1 comment

A roundup of pretty pictures and news from our robotic ambassadors around the solar system, from November 4 through 8.

Read More »

New Gems from the Moon

Posted by Bill Dunford on 2016/10/10 04:00 CDT | 3 comments

More than seven years after the end of its mission, JAXA has released the entire data set from Kaguya's HDTV cameras.

Read More »

Fun with a new image data set: Mars Orbiter Mission's Mars Colour Camera

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/10/06 06:16 CDT | 11 comments

It's always a delight to sink my teeth into a new data set, and I have spent this week playing with one I've been anticipating for a long time: ISRO's Mars Orbiter's Mars Colour Camera, or MCC. MCC is unique among current Mars cameras in its ability to get color, print-quality, wide-angle, regional views of Mars.

Read More »

MOM's Second Anniversary at Mars

Posted by Sandhya Ramesh on 2016/10/05 01:04 CDT | 1 comment

On Mars Orbiter Mission’s second anniversary of Mars arrival, ISRO has (finally!) made available to the public data from its first year in orbit.

Read More »

New Findings are Conclusive: Europa is crying out for exploration

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2016/09/26 01:36 CDT | 19 comments

New scientific findings add to the evidence that Europa is spouting its liquid ocean into space. NASA has a mission to Europa in the works, but it wouldn't launch for at least a decade. Congress can make it faster, but it all depends on whether they can pass a budget this year.

Read More »

Some beautiful new (old) views of Neptune and Triton

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2016/09/20 02:40 CDT | 4 comments

Beautiful new amateur work with 27-year-old Voyager data.

Read More »

Items 1 - 10 of 100  12345678910Next
Facebook Twitter Email RSS AddThis

Help Us Go Farther

The Planetary Fund

Help us accelerate progress in our four core enterprises: Robotic Space Exploration, Human Space Exploration, Planetary Defense, and The Search for Life.

Donate

JOIN THE
PLANETARY SOCIETY

Beyond The Horizon, There's More To Explore!

Become a member of The Planetary Society and together we will create the future of space exploration.

Join Us

Space in Images

Pretty pictures and
awe-inspiring science.

See More

Join The Planetary Society

Let’s explore the cosmos together!

Become a Member

Connect With Us

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and more…
Continue the conversation with our online community!