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The Planetary Report • September Equinox 2015

More to Explore: We've Only Just Begun!

On the Cover: In the realm of space exploration, we citizens of Earth have made an astonishing amount of progress in the last 35 years. Our visit to Pluto and Charon is a testament to the power of vision and focused, hard work in reaching ambitious goals. Our cover image is a colorized, infrared layer from the now famous, enhanced-color, high-resolution global view of Pluto captured by New Horizons on July 14, 2015. To read more about how the image was created, go to
NASA / JHUAPL / SwRI / Zac L. Doyle


6 The Extraordinary Pace of Progress: Jennifer Vaughn and Bruce Betts celebrate advances in space exploration over the last 35 years.

14 From the Archives: Donna Stevens shares a few photographs of our founders from the Society's early days.

18 Humans Orbiting Mars Casey Dreier looks at a realistic plan.

20 Drilling and Imaging Updates: Bruce Betts updates us on the Planetary Deep Drill and Mastcam-Z.


2 Snapshots from Space The landscape of a comet.

4 Your Place in Space Bill Nye celebrates our past and looks toward our future.

13 Q&A Space telescopes vs. planetary probes.

13 Volunteer Spotlight Kate Howells talks about the power of a cool view.

16 Members' Dialogue Reader responses to the Society's Humans On Mars paper.

19 Factinos New evidence for water on Mars.

21 What's Up? Pre-dawn planets and Geminid meteor shower.

23 Happening on Planetary Radio Mat Kaplan talks to the scientists and engineers that make exploration happen.

23 On

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Bill Nye and people
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