Stories, updates, insights, and original analysis from The Planetary Society.
LightSail 2’s launch window opens on June 22, and we are finalizing plans for our launch viewing celebrations. Once we have finished coordinating the details with the Air Force’s STP-2 mission team and the Kennedy Space Center, we will share them with all of our members and backers so that you can join us in person or remotely via the internet.
The next time its solar sail is deployed, NEA Scout will be out near the Moon.
A Canadian Space Agency proposal would install a solar sail on the outside of the Deep Space Gateway, a miniature space station in lunar orbit.
When SLS launches Orion to the moon in 2018, a fleet of deep space CubeSats will come along for the ride, including a solar sailing spacecraft similar to LightSail.
Van Kane rounds up some recent planetary mission concepts based on CubeSat technology.
I’m excited to report some big news on The Planetary Society’s LightSail project: actual launch dates on actual launch vehicles!
Chris Biddy from Stellar Exploration Inc. presented information about our LightSail project at the 2012 Aerospace Mechanisms Symposium.
The city of Tustin is about an hour's drive from Planetary Society HQ in Pasadena. That's when the freeway gods are kind, which they never are. The trip I made there yesterday was well worth the trouble.
JAXA's solar sail demonstration craft IKAROS is still puttering along, 17 months after it launched, and its controllers back on Earth keep coming up with new things to try with it. I'm pretty amazed by the most recent trick: reversing its spin direction. This may not sound like a big deal, but it is, especially for IKAROS.
The first full scale deployment of the Planetary Society's LightSail 1 solar sail was conducted on March 4, 2011 at Stellar Exploration in San Luis Obispo, California.
NASA announced that the Planetary Society’s LightSail 1 solar sail mission is on their short list for upcoming launch opportunities. The missions selected are CubeSats destined for piggyback launches as part of NASA's CubeSat Launch Initiative.
NASA's Nanosail-D spacecraft surprised everyone, including its controllers, by suddenly deploying from its parent FASTSAT spacecraft and beginning its mission in space.
It was once thought lost in space, but it looks like NanoSail-D has ejected from its FastSat carrier and is preparing for deployment.
Japan's IKAROS team stole the show at the International Solar Sailing Symposium in New York City, where they announced that their spacecraft had achieved controlled solar sail flight.
While we were in New York for the International Solar Sailing Symposium last week, we held a meeting with the Japanese IKAROS team to discuss technical results and issues in our two projects.
This week, Bill Nye and I are attending the International Solar Sail Symposium at the New York College of Technology.
The IKAROS spacecraft continues to perform its mission well as its team at the Japan Space Exploration Center moves closer to the first fully controlled solar sail flight.
LightSail 1, the Planetary Society's new ultra-light Cubesat-based solar sail spacecraft, has passed its Critical Design Review.
We've already seen IKAROS' view of its deployed sails from cameras attached to the spacecraft, but, in a brilliant idea, the Japanese built IKAROS with two deployable cameras that could view the thing from a distance.
JAXA finally issued the formal announcement: they successfully expanded IKAROS' square sail!
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