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Snapshots from Space

by Emily Lakdawalla

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Emily Lakdawalla

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Follow the thrilling adventures of planetary missions, past and present, and see the stunningly beautiful photos that they return from space!

Fun With a New Data Set: The OSIRIS-REx Earth Flyby

Emily Lakdawalla • February 28, 2019

The OSIRIS-REx team recently issued their first data release to the Planetary Data System. This release doesn’t include any closeup pictures of asteroid Bennu, but it does include all the pictures they took during their September 2017 Earth flyby.

Why are there no stars in most space images?

Emily Lakdawalla • January 28, 2019 • 6

Look up at space at night from a dark location and you can see innumerable stars. Why, then, do photos of so many things in space show black space, devoid of stars?

Moon Monday: Tethys from Voyager

Emily Lakdawalla • March 12, 2018 • 1

To start the week, Voyager 2's best image of Tethys.

Image processing trick: How to open PDS-formatted images in Photoshop

Emily Lakdawalla • March 07, 2018 • 1

Emily explains to amateur image processors how to open archival NASA science data directly in Photoshop without needing to use any other software tools.

#DPS2017: Progress report on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter images of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring

Emily Lakdawalla • October 20, 2017 • 1

Three years ago, on October 19, 2014, comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring passed within 138,000 kilometers of Mars. At the 2017 meeting of the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society, we heard a progress report on Mars orbiter imaging of the comet's nucleus.

Fun with a new image data set: Mars Orbiter Mission's Mars Colour Camera

Emily Lakdawalla • October 06, 2016 • 11

It's always a delight to sink my teeth into a new data set, and I have spent this week playing with one I've been anticipating for a long time: ISRO's Mars Orbiter's Mars Colour Camera, or MCC. MCC is unique among current Mars cameras in its ability to get color, print-quality, wide-angle, regional views of Mars.

Where to find rapidly released space image data

Emily Lakdawalla • September 21, 2016 • 1

Interested in playing with recent space image data? Here's a list of places to get the freshest photos from space.

Cassini's camera views of Titan's polar lakes in summer, processed into pseudocolor

Emily Lakdawalla • September 12, 2016 • 1

Titan's north polar lakes are well-lit by summer sun in these recent Cassini images. Image processing enthusiast Ian Regan shares his recipe for processing the longer-wavelength Titan images into visually pleasing "pseudocolor."

What to expect from JunoCam at Jupiter

Emily Lakdawalla • June 09, 2016 • 16

Juno will go in to orbit at Jupiter on July 5 (July 4 in North and South American time zones), and it's carrying a camera that's going to take really awesome photos of Jupiter. But you're going to have to be patient. Emily Lakdawalla explains why.

A feast of new OSIRIS photos from comet 67P

Emily Lakdawalla • May 11, 2016 • 2

Last week, the Rosetta mission released a large quantity of science data to the worldwide public, including photos from the mission's close observation phase and the Philae landing.

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