Stories, updates, insights, and original analysis from The Planetary Society.
How Uranus and Neptune are key to unlocking how planets form
A flagship mission to the ice giants — Uranus and Neptune — will forever change our understanding of the origin and evolution of our solar system.
Did Voyager 1 capture an image of Enceladus' plumes erupting?
Amateur image processor Ted Stryk revisited Voyager 1 data of Enceladus and came across a surprise.
New Gems from the Moon
More than seven years after the end of its mission, JAXA has released the entire data set from Kaguya's HDTV cameras.
New Horizons update: Resolving features on Charon and seeing in color
Only about three weeks remain until the flyby — it's getting really close! I almost don't want the anticipation to end. New Horizons is now getting color images and is seeing features on Charon. Deep searches have yielded no new moons.
Pluto and Charon spin among the stars
I've spent a happy couple of days playing with raw data downloaded from the New Horizons website, making animations of the dances of Pluto and Charon.
An enigmatic line across Pluto: Plutonian canali!?
Pluto and Charon are growing larger in New Horizons' forward view, beginning to develop distinct personalities. A version of recent New Horizons photos processed by Björn Jónsson reveals an enigmatic dark line. Our maps of Pluto's surface are now as good as our maps of Mars and Venus, circa 1900!
A (very) few more details on Pluto
Last week the New Horizons mission released a few new processed versions of their latest and greatest images of Pluto. They're the best images of Pluto that Earth has ever seen, but they're still a long way from what New Horizons will be able to show us, six weeks from now.
Phobos over Mars
Today the Mars Orbiter Mission released a nice four-image animation of teeny dark Phobos crossing Mars' huge orange disk. Mars Orbiter Mission joins a long line of Mars missions that have produced images of Mars and Phobos together.
Another Pale Blue Dot — Uranus Spied By Cassini
The Cassini mission has already returned an array of images of other solar system members from Saturn orbit: Earth (and the Moon), Venus, Mars, and Jupiter. It’s time to add another world to that list!
Pretty Picture: Three Wanderers
With all the excitement happening on missions criscrossing the solar system, I often forget to enjoy the views of our solar system that we can achieve from home. Amateur astronomers don't make the same mistake. Here's a lovely photo that Stuart Atkinson sent me, captured last night from Kendal, England, showing four special wanderers.
Looking Backward: Curiosity gazes upon the setting Earth
A few days ago, Curiosity looked westward after sunset and photographed Earth setting toward the mountainous rim of Gale crater.
Cosmos with Cosmos Episode 6: Travellers' Tales
The Voyager mission may be the ultimate expression of our desire to explore, but why does that will exist in the first place? Why is it unique to humans?
Super cool Phobos and Deimos animations from Mars Express
I've been delving in to the Mars Express image archive this week, checking out its images of Phobos, and found a couple of really cool time-series of images to assemble into animations.
The "Starship Century" Beckons
The Benford brothers provide inspiration and hard fact in their excellent new anthology about interstellar travel.
Pretty picture: spectacular Saturn and Titan
A lovely view of the ringed planet and its hazy moon seen from nearly behind them just a few days ago.
Pushing back the frontier, and filling in the blank spaces on the map.
Favorite space images: "Many Worlds"
For this evening's Planetary Radio Live event, Mat Kaplan asked me to do a presentation of some favorite space images. I told him that picking favorite space images is like picking favorite children; it's not possible because they're all my favorite. To narrow things down, I decided to explore a theme:
Pretty picture: Neptune and Triton
On a lonely evening, what is one to do but to dip into archival space image data and surface with a gorgeous photo of a crescent Neptune and Triton?
Curiosity catches sunspots along with Phobos and Deimos transits
Curiosity has been shooting photos of the Sun as Phobos and Deimos cross its face, and -- as far as I can tell -- captured sunspots as well.
Chang'e 2: The Full Story
An update on China's second lunar orbiter, Chang'e 2, which is now heading for asteroid Toutatis.