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Planetary Society Blog



A guide to interesting stuff going on in space science, space exploration, and space advocacy.



 



Planetary Society volunteers host SpaceUp London 2017

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 06:00:14 -0500

Earlier this month, The Planetary Society brought together space enthusiasts at Queen Mary University of London for “SpaceUp London 2017”—the first large-scale event organized by Planetary Society volunteers in Europe.



Revisiting the ice giants: NASA considers missions to Uranus and Neptune

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 06:00:14 -0500

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 New Horizons' next target passed in front of a star, this scientist was watching from Argentina

Fri, 16 Jun 2017 06:00:24 -0500

A team of scientists recently traveled to rural Argentina in the hopes of catching New Horizons' next target—Kuiper Belt object MU 69—crossing in front of a distant star.



Curiosity update, sols 1675-1725: Traverse to Vera Rubin Ridge

Tue, 13 Jun 2017 13:19:17 -0500

Curiosity has had a busy eight weeks, driving south from the Bagnold Dunes toward Vera Rubin Ridge. The path has steepened and the rover is now rapidly climbing upward with every meter traveled. It's been a productive time for arm instruments, but the drill is still not working.



Did a Planetary Society citizen scientist help find one of Earth’s biggest impact craters?

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 06:00:22 -0500

Scientists have found what appears to be a 250-kilometer-wide crater near the Falkland Islands. Is it ground zero for Earth's largest-ever extinction event?



Despite setbacks, SpaceX continues to gain momentum

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 06:00:08 -0500

SpaceX lost rockets in both 2015 and 2016. But an analysis of Falcon 9 launch data shows the company continues to gain momentum, while making giant strides forward in reusability.



Space station partners weigh in on NASA’s Deep Space Gateway plans

Thu, 08 Jun 2017 06:00:26 -0500

In March, NASA officials revealed updated plans for a small space station near the Moon called the Deep Space Gateway. Anatoly Zak reports the plans threw a monkey wrench into years-long planning efforts by NASA’s international partners.



Recap: India's new GSLV-MK3 rocket completes successful test

Wed, 07 Jun 2017 16:19:52 -0500

The first operational launch of the Geostationary Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark 3 rocket, or GSLV-MK3, developed by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), was successfully conducted on Monday.



Remembering planetary scientist Michael A’Hearn

Wed, 07 Jun 2017 10:55:28 -0500

Planetary scientist Michael A’Hearn passed away on Monday, May 29, leaving a remarkable legacy in cometary science—but even more importantly in the careers of many younger scientists who flourished with his encouragement and mentorship.



Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Shoots the Moon on Arrival at Perseverance Valley

Tue, 06 Jun 2017 13:41:31 -0500

In another dynamic demonstration of what can be achieved when a team works together, Opportunity cruised to the top of Perseverance Valley, shot the moon, and drove into her 160th month of surface operations in May.