space
Here’s Where the ExoMars 2020 Mission Will Likely Land, and Why

When it comes to landing a robot on another planet, perhaps the most important question is where to put the dang thing. The researchers behind the upcoming ExoMars mission, consisting of a rover and lander, have now announced their preferred location on the Red Planet. Read More >>

space
NASA Hopes for Martian Wind as It Extends Efforts to Reach Opportunity Rover

Five months have passed since scientists last heard from the Opportunity rover, which went into hibernation mode after planet-wide dust storm dimmed the Martian skies. But it appears that NASA has no plans to curtail its search for the rover, at least “for the foreseeable future,” according to a release. Read More >>

space
BepiColombo Spacecraft Snaps Its First Selfie From Space on Its Way to Mercury

The BepiColombo Mercury Transfer Module (MTM), which is currently on an ambitious mission to the best planet with a payload of two orbiters, has sent us its first image from space. Read More >>

space
Launching Tonight: A Mission to the Best Planet (Mercury)

Mercury is the best planet, in my humble but well-researched opinion. Sure, it may be small, rocky, and lacking an atmosphere, but how it came to look the way it does absolutely baffles scientists. It might even have water and carbon hidden away from the beginning of the Solar System. Tonight, scientists from the European Space Agency and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency are launching a mission that could uncover some of the secrets of this mysterious rock. Read More >>

space
Oh Crap, It Looks Like Europa’s Surface Is Covered With Gigantic Shards of Ice

Jupiter’s moon Europa, with its subsurface ocean, may have what it takes to foster alien life. A mission to this icy moon is on the wishlist of many astronomers, but new research suggests it won’t be easy to land spacecraft there: Its surface seems to be littered with icy spikes, the tallest of which measure five stories high. Read More >>

space
A Third Probe Landed on Asteroid Ryugu—but It Had Just 16 Hours to Live

A German-French probe called MASCOT was sent to the surface of Ryugu, an asteroid located 190 million miles from Earth, to collect valuable data. But it needed to work fast—the shoebox-sized probe had only 16 hours to live. Read More >>

space
Scientists Have Detected Enormous Dust Storms on Saturn’s Moon Titan

The discovery of enigmatic dust storms on Titan means the Solar System’s most exotic moon just took it up a notch. Read More >>

space
Jupiter’s ‘Baffling’ Magnetic Field Is Unlike Any Other

Jupiter is strange for a number of reasons. It’s the biggest planet in our Solar System, of course. It harbours perhaps the most intense radiation environments. And, according to a new study, it has a magnetic field unlike that of any other known planet. Read More >>

space
This Is Our Best Look Yet at Saturn’s Aurora

Sometimes, things line up just perfectly. For example, back in 2017, the Hubble Space Telescope got a full view of Saturn’s northern aurora. The newly-released image above isn’t exactly what Hubble saw – but it’s still exciting, I promise. Read More >>

space
Jupiter’s Moon Ganymede Generates Incredible Magnetic Waves

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. Read More >>

space
Report: NASA Needs to Get Moving on Its Plan to Snatch Some Mars Dust

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 survey report says NASA has done a pretty good job hitting the goals set by the 2013-2022 Planetary Science survey. But there’s work left to do, especially when it comes to bringing a sample of Martian dust to Earth. Read More >>

exoplanets
This Solar System Catalogue Could Be Key to Finding an Earth-Like Exoplanet

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. Read More >>

space
New Images Show Saturn’s Moon Titan in Incredible Detail

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 nanometres from crest to crest. This means we miss any light-emitting details coming from other wavelengths, such as from radio and microwave light, as well as infrared, ultraviolet, and x-ray. Read More >>

space
Spacecraft Spots Signs of Standing Body of Water Under Martian Surface

After decades of debate, scientists have spotted hints of liquid water trapped beneath the planet’s south polar ice cap. Read More >>

space
Here’s How NASA Is Dealing With the Massive Martian Dust Storm

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. Read More >>