Stories, updates, insights, and original analysis from The Planetary Society.
Today, I'm kicking the week off with a look at the unusually intense confluence of far flung planetary exploration that's just around the corner, starting the middle of next year.
Exploring another planet is an expensive business. We all know this, but sometimes it hits home harder than others. Today was one of those times.
I spent a large portion of the day at the Lunar and Planetary Institute's library and presented my own poster during the poster sessions, so my coverage of Thursday's sessions is limited.
The Outer Planets Assessment Group or OPAG met two weeks ago, and the presentations from the meeting were recently posted online.
John Spencer, erstwhile guest blogger (see here and here), just sent me a few notes on the recent Outer Planets Assessment Group meeting.
During the first day of OPAG, the chair of the group, Fran Bagenal, was not present because she was participating in some rather important discussions taking place in Maryland.
The next presentation at OPAG was given by Ralph Lorenz and Tom Spilker on a Titan Montgolfiere Mission Study. What's a Montgolfiere, you ask?
Following the mission- and science-focused presentations of the morning, there came two rather alarming presentations.
The two-day meeting of the Outer Planets Assessment Group is over and I have 30-odd pages of notes to wrestle with.
Next up at the Outer Planets Assessment Group meeting was an overview of the plans for future Europa missions.
I said earlier I was going to cover the poster sessions next, and there are some cool things that I want to write about, but I thought I'd better get to something a bit more topical a bit sooner: Europa and the other Galilean satellites, and when (if!?) we'll be exploring them again.
With its mission at Tempel 1 over, the Deep Impact spacecraft has altered its course in order to allow a future mission at another comet.