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New Map Released of Jupiter’s Moon, Ganymede

NASA February 13, 2014 More than 400 years after its discovery by astronomer Galileo Galilei, the largest moon in the solar system – Jupiter’s moon Ganymede – has finally claimed a spot on the map. A group of scientists led by Geoffrey Collins of Wheaton College has produced the first global geologic map of Ganymede, Jupiter’s seventh moon. The map ... Read More »

Curiosity Rover Crosses a Big Martian Sand Dune

February 11, 2014 The Curiosity Rover used its navigation camera to capture these images (see animation) of a traverse made on February 06, 2014, when the rover crossed a sand dune at the entrance to “Dingo Gap,” inside Gale Crater. On February 09, the rover traversed another 135 feet, making it all the way through the gap. image credits: NASA ... Read More »

New Signs of Fresh Water Flows on Mars

NASA JPL February 10, 2014 NASA spacecraft orbiting Mars have returned clues for understanding seasonal features that are the strongest indication of possible liquid water that may exist today on the Red Planet. The features are dark, finger-like markings that advance down some Martian slopes when temperatures rise. The new clues include corresponding seasonal changes in iron minerals on the ... Read More »

Earth and Moon – Seen From Mars at Night

NASA JPL February 06, 2014 The rover’s view of its original home planet even includes our moon, just below Earth. The images, taken about 80 minutes after sunset during the rover’s 529th Martian day (Jan. 31, 2014) are available at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA17936 for a broad scene of the evening sky, and at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA17935 for a zoomed-in view of Earth and the ... Read More »

Dramatic New Impact Crater Spotted on Mars

NASA JPL February 05, 2014 Space rocks hitting Mars excavate fresh craters at a pace of more than 200 per year, but few new Mars scars pack as much visual punch as one seen in a NASA image released today. The image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a crater about ... Read More »

Searching Interstellar Dust for Signs of Life

NASA February 04, 2013 While the origin of life remains mysterious, scientists are finding more and more evidence that material created in space and delivered to Earth by comet and meteor impacts could have given a boost to the start of life. Some meteorites supply molecules that can be used as building blocks to make certain kinds of larger molecules ... Read More »

After 10 Years, Opportunity Rover Still Making Discoveries

NASA JPL January 23, 2014 New findings from rock samples collected and examined by NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity have confirmed an ancient wet environment that was milder and older than the acidic and oxidizing conditions told by rocks the rover examined previously. In the Jan. 24 edition of the journal Science, Opportunity Deputy Principal Investigator Ray Arvidson, a professor ... Read More »

Water Discovered Around Dwarf Planet Ceres

ESA January 22, 2014 ESA’s Herschel space observatory has discovered water vapour around Ceres, the first unambiguous detection of water vapour around an object in the asteroid belt. With a diameter of 950 km, Ceres is the largest object in the asteroid belt, which lies between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. But unlike most asteroids, Ceres is almost spherical ... Read More »

Mystery Rock on Mars Continues to Baffle

NASA JPL January 21, 2014 This before-and-after pair of images of the same patch of ground in front of NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity 13 days apart documents the arrival of a bright rock onto the scene. The rover had completed a short drive just before taking the second image, and one of its wheels likely knocked the rock — ... Read More »

Send Your Name to An Asteroid

NASA January 15, 2014 NASA is inviting people around the world to submit their names to be etched on a microchip aboard a spacecraft headed to the asteroid Bennu in 2016. The “Messages to Bennu!” microchip will travel to the asteroid aboard the agency’s Origins-Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft. The robotic mission will spend more than ... Read More »

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