Where did we come from? Are we alone in the Universe? We can only answer these questions by exploring the planets and other worlds of our Solar System and beyond. Learn why these worlds are so important, and how you can get involved.

The Sun, our Solar System’s star

Our Sun is an active star, frequently bursting out storms of plasma and radiation into the Solar System.

Mercury, world of extremes

Mercury can teach us how planets form and what the early solar system was like when life arose on Earth.

Venus, Earth's twin sister

Venus may have had oceans and been habitable to life before being transformed into an inhospitable wasteland.

Earth, our home planet

Earth, the only planet known to support life, offers liquid water, an oxygen-rich atmosphere, and protection from the Sun’s harmful radiation.

The Moon, preserving Earth's origin story

The Moon is the only world besides Earth ever visited by humans. By studying it, scientists can piece together Earth’s origin story.

Mars, the red planet

Mars once had liquid water on the surface and could have supported life. We don't know how it changed to the cold, dry desert-world it is today.

Asteroids, comets, and other small worlds

These leftover planet-building materials are time capsules that give us a peek into our origins.

Jupiter, the planet with a planetary system of its own

Jupiter, our largest planet, teaches us how planetary systems evolve. Its four planet-like moons make it a planetary system of its own.

Io, Jupiter’s chaotic volcano moon

Io, one of Jupiter's four Galilean moons, is known for its explosivity.

Europa, Jupiter’s possible watery moon

Europa is the sixth-largest moon in the solar system and Jupiter’s fourth-largest satellite.

Saturn, planet of rings, moons and more to explore

Saturn is the crown jewel of our solar system. It has a stunning set of rings, diverse moons, and so much more to explore.

Enceladus, Saturn’s moon with a hidden ocean

With its subsurface ocean and so-called "tiger stripes," Enceladus is one of Saturn's most fascinating moons.

Titan, a moon with familiar vistas

Saturn's largest moon, Titan, is both the only other place in the Solar System with liquid on its surface and the only moon with a thick atmosphere, making it a tantalizing destination to search for life.

Uranus, the sideways planet

Uranus may be the butt of all planet jokes, but there's much more to this world than potty humor.

Neptune, planet of wind and ice

Neptune, our outermost planet, is a windy blue world with exotic ice, raging storms, rings, and a moon that could have a subsurface ocean.

Triton, Neptune's largest moon

Triton is likely a captured Kuiper Belt Object and possibly an ocean world.

Pluto, the Kuiper Belt’s most famous dwarf planet

Pluto is a dwarf planet and the largest of the Kuiper Belt objects (KBOs) — a collection of ice-rock bodies found outside Neptune’s orbit.

Exoplanets, worlds orbiting other stars

We know of more than 5,000 planets orbiting other stars. Does one of them host life as we know it?

A Pale Blue Dot

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us.

Latest Articles

3-D Views of Titan's Surface from Huygens

It's been close to a month since Huygens descended to the surface of Titan. Many visitors to this website have expressed impatience with the pace of the release of images from the Huygens cameras, a feeling that is no doubt shared by space enthusiasts around the world who are eager to see refined views of the alien surface of Titan.

They Were the First, and the Last, to Hear from Huygens

On January 14, 2005, the eyes of the world were on the European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany, where Huygens mission operators were anxiously awaiting news from Huygens. Would the little probe -- a mission built in seventeen countries, more than twenty years in the making -- be a success, or would it prove a repeat of the heartbreaking silence of Beagle 2?

Huygens' Descending View of Titan

Scientists from the Huygens Descent Imager Spectral Radiometer (DISR) team have released their first mosaic of images captured during Huygens' descent. The mosaic is composed of 30 images captured by the Medium Resolution Imager of Huygens' Descent Imager Spectral Radiometer while the probe was spinning and descending toward Titan.

Raw Images from Huygens

In the 48 hours since Huygens' data first began streaming back to Earth, a few processed images of the channeled landscape and bouldery landing site have been released to the public. Now, the Descent Imager Spectral Radiometer team at the University of Arizona has put all of Huygens' images online for the public to view.

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