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The Downlink

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More Issues

Feature: Exoplanets

2 March 2020

Your Guide to Exoplanets

Learn why and how we study exoplanets, and how you can get involved.

2 March 2020

Our Exoplanets Research

Scientists are searching for 100 Earth-like planets around other stars, and you can help.

Swapna Krishna ● 12 March 2020

What is the Habitable Zone?

The habitable zone is the not-too-hot, not-too-cold region around a star where liquid water can exist.

Emily Lakdawalla ● 2 March 2020

The Different Kinds of Exoplanets
You Meet in the Milky Way

Lava worlds. Hot Jupiters. Earth 2.0 candidates. Here's a rundown of some notable exoplanets.

Emily Lakdawalla & Staff ● 2 March 2020

How to Search for Exoplanets

Some methods almost sound like science fiction: Using gravity as a magnifying glass, watching stars wobble at turtle-like speeds, and searching for tiny dips in starlight.

2 March 2020

Your guide to WFIRST

WFIRST, NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope, is the next step in our hunt for Earth-sized exoplanets.

Blogs & Articles

How GRAIL will meet its end

Emily Lakdawalla • December 13, 2012 • 2

The twin GRAIL spacecraft are nearly out of fuel, and are being directed to a controlled impact near the north pole on the near side of the Moon on December 17. Before the end, though, they did some cool things, including flying within 2000 meters of mountaintops, and catching video of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter in flight.

What's up in the Solar System in August 2012

Jason Davis • August 03, 2012

Welcome to the monthly roundup of our solar system's envoy of electronic explorers! All eyes are on Curiosity as it approaches Mars this weekend. Who will lend support at the Red Planet?

A solar eclipse - as viewed from the Moon

Emily Lakdawalla • May 28, 2012 • 3

A solar eclipse isn't just a spiffy sight to Earthlings; it looks pretty cool to lunar dwellers as well.

3D view of an unnamed lunar crater

Emily Lakdawalla • May 03, 2012

Grab your red-blue 3D glasses and dive in to this small but spectacular unnamed lunar crater as seen in a Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter photo.

New views of Lunokhod 1 and Luna 17 from Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Emily Lakdawalla • March 14, 2012

It is always thrilling to see relics of human exploration out there on other worlds. Today, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera team posted some new photos of two defunct spacecraft: the Luna 17 lander and the Lunokhod 1 rover. I've posted images of the two craft before, but the ones released today are much better.

Comparing Chang'e 2 and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter maps of the Moon

Phil Stooke • February 13, 2012 • 2

How does the LRO lunar map compare with the new Chinese product from Chang'e 2?

Bill Nye and people
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