Stories, updates, insights, and original analysis from The Planetary Society.
Take a look at distant worlds, far-out views of the cosmos, and even some remote possibilities with this week’s scoop on space news and solar system history.
How did our solar system come to be? Why are the planets, asteroids, comets, and other small worlds where they are now?
Six scientists share the major planetary science discoveries of the past decade, and the questions that will drive the next 10 years of solar system exploration.
Mark Marley explains what planetary scientists mean when they say the word
Imagine 2 icy worlds far from the Sun. Their serene, blue atmospheres. Huge, ominous-looking storms. Tantalizing glimpses of moons with exotic, icy terrains. Delicate sets of encircling rings.
The color of Uranus and Neptune is similar, but not identical. Uranus appears greener and Neptune bluer.
Björn Jónsson argues that even now, 40 years after Voyager 1 and 2 were launched, a lot of the data they returned is still of high interest.
One fact dominates the planning for any mission to Uranus or Neptune: They lie far from the sun. A newly released NASA report looks at how we can explore these icy giants.
Only one spacecraft has ever visited Uranus and Neptune: Voyager 2, in the late 1980s. A new NASA report explores the reasons to go back, and what type of mission might take us there.
When are the solstices and equinoxes on the giant planets, and when are they best positioned for view from Earth? I ask these questions a lot as I write about Earth photos of giant planets, and I finally decided to gather the answers to those questions in a single post.
There are no spacecraft at Uranus or Neptune, and there haven't been for 30 and 25 years, respectively. So we depend on Earth-based astronomers to monitor them, including Damian Peach.
Amateur image processor Björn Jónsson brings us some new views of Uranus from reprocessed Voyager 2 data.
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!
When sent from deep space, even imperfect images can inform and amaze.
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?
It’s been a long time since anyone paid Uranus a visit. The Uranus system is, however, fascinating, as evidenced by the wealth of topics covered by the diverse group of planetary scientists who gathered to discuss it last week at the Paris Observatory.
With the recent announcement by NASA that the 36 year-old spacecraft Voyager 1 has officially entered interstellar space at a distance from the sun about four times further than Neptune's orbit, and with Voyager 2 not far behind, it seems worthwhile to explore how humans managed to fling objects so far into space.
The European Space Agency will announce two major science missions this November, one of which is likely to be devoted to solar system exploration.
New plans may make a mission to Uranus affordable within NASA's new, constrained budget.
Despite the fact that Voyager 2 returned relatively few high-resolution images from either Uranus or Neptune, there are many more photos in the archives than regularly make it to public view.