Nearly all of Mars has been under the assault of a planet-wide dust storm since June. The nerve-wracking question: Is the Opportunity rover okay?
NASA’s Galileo spacecraft surprised scientists when it revealed that Jupiter’s moon Ganymede generated its own magnetic field. But new research shows Ganymede also creates incredibly powerful waves that rocket particles to enormous energies.
NASA doesn’t just randomly decide what telescopes and satellites to shoot into space and what planet to study next. Instead, a committee of outside scientists drafts a set of goals and recommendations in what’s called a decadal survey. And though it notes some financial setbacks, a midterm review of the last decadal…
By searching for the telltale, periodic dimming of light from distant stars, astronomers can spot orbiting exoplanets tens to hundreds of light-years away. But how do they know what these bodies look like? Perhaps they first try to imagine how the planets in our own Solar System might appear to a faraway alien world.
NASA’s newest exoplanet-hunting spacecraft has started taking scientific data as of last week, according to a NASA release.
After decades of debate, scientists have spotted hints of liquid water trapped beneath the planet’s south polar ice cap.
These new views of Mars, taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, show that the entire planet is now engulfed in the dust storm that began in late May. And while orbiters are studying the storm to understand it better, it could spell trouble for the rovers on its surface.
Our limited human eyesight can really constrain our understanding of the universe. We can see only a thin swath of light’s wavelengths, those waves with peaks 390 to 700 nanometers from crest to crest. This means we miss any light-emitting details coming from other wavelengths, such as from radio and microwave light,…
This is a new picture of Neptune taken from the Earth. It’s nothing short of amazing.
Scientists announced that they have discovered 10 previously unknown moons orbiting Jupiter. This brings the gaseous behemoth’s total moon count up to 79.
Last month, a fireball lit up the skies over Botswana just hours after scientists first spotted the space rock hurtling toward Earth. Researchers from Botswana, South Africa, Finland, and the United States have now found pieces of the meteorite.
Despite being wildly different from Earth in almost every way, Jupiter does feature some familiar phenomena—including aurorae, what we call the Northern and Southern lights. But Jupiter’s aurorae have something Earth’s don’t: strange features caused by the Jovian moons.
At this point, we’ve spotted several thousand exoplanets—there’s nothing super exciting anymore about finding a distant star with several worlds orbiting it. But today, scientists are announcing that they have seen an exoplanet in the middle of forming.
The Rosetta mission’s Philae lander descended toward the two-and-a-half-mile-wide comet at a human’s walking pace. For seven tense hours, scientists in Darmstadt, Germany monitored its radio signal. They would have no idea whether they’d done everything correctly until after the moment of touchdown. If all went well,…
As far as humans are concerned, Mars has two stories. One is in the present: We’re trying to send our ships and our astronauts to the Red Planet in order to understand what it’s like today. But much of that work is meant to tell a second story—what the planet used to be like.
Using data collected by NASA’s late-great Cassini space probe, scientists have detected traces of complex organic molecules seeping out from Enceladus’ ice-covered ocean. It’s yet another sign that this intriguing Saturnian moon has what it takes to sustain life.
After nearly four years of traveling through space, the Hayabusa2 spacecraft has successfully rendezvoused with the Ryugu asteroid, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency confirmed Wednesday. Let the next stage of this historic sampling-and-return mission begin!
The Moon is incredible, and you should look at it. Our view of it is always in flux, but sometimes, the Moon’s visage changes in a particularly dramatic way—like when it sneaks behind the Earth’s shadow and turns red. An especially long lunar eclipse will occur at the end of next month (July 27), which is exciting…
The European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission to the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was one for the ages, providing an unprecedented look at this oddly shaped celestial object. The Rosetta probe captured nearly 100,000 images over the course of its mission, all of which are now freely available to the public in a…
For the past two weeks, a massive dust storm has churned on Mars, forcing NASA to put its Opportunity rover into hibernation mode. But Curiosity, a rover on the other side of the planet, is now feeling the effects of the storm as well, revealing the dramatic, planet-size scale of this dusty weather system.