Posts filtered by tags: Planetary Science[x]


 

Getting to know 2015 TG 387, aka "the Goblin," an unconfirmed dwarf planet lurking in the Ort cloud

Have you heard of the Goblin? It's a likely dwarf-sized planet named that because it was discovered around Halloween, 2015. The Goblin travels in a 32-thousand-year orbit around our sun. It is currently 7.5 billion miles away, somewhere in the mysterious Oort Cloud area of the solar system. The Goblin is one of the farthest known objects within our solar system. Image: YouTube
Tags: Post, Video, Astronomy, News, Planets, Planetary Science, Oort Cloud, Dwarf-sized Planets


Four Shortlisted NASA Missions Would Explore the Nastiest Places in the Solar System

As part of its ongoing Discovery Program, NASA has selected four possible missions that would involve some of the most hostile and enigmatic places in the solar system.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Nasa, Space Exploration, Planetary Science


NASA Requests Funding for Audacious Plan to Bring Martian Soil to Earth

NASA is officially asking Congress to fund a Mars sample-return project, in what would be one of the most complex missions ever attempted by the space agency. Read more...
Tags: Science, Congress, Nasa, Earth, Mars, Planetary Science, Mars 2020, Mars Sample Return


Comet 67P Repeatedly Changed Color During the Historic Rosetta Mission

A review of data taken over the course of the two-year Rosetta mission shows that comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko was sometimes reddish in appearance, while at other times it assumed a bluish hue. Sounds weird, but scientists have come up with a sensible explanation that doesn’t involve aliens with paint guns. Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Rosetta, Comets, Rosetta Mission, Planetary Science, Churyumov Gerasimenko, Comet 67pchuryumov Gerasimenko


Hydrogen Molecules on Hottest Known Exoplanet Are Being Ripped to Shreds

Astronomers have documented a bizarre cycle of molecular destruction and rebirth on an ultra-hot, Jupiter-like exoplanet where surface temperatures exceed 7,750 degrees Fahrenheit.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Chemistry, Jupiter, Exoplanets, Hot Jupiters, Planetary Science, Really Hot


Excellent animation comparing the rotations of the planets in our solar system

James O'Donoghue, a planetary scientist at JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency), made this excellent clip comparing the rotations, tilts, and sidereal day lengths of the eight planets and two of the dwarf planets in our solar system. There are many more dwarf planet candidates, but they aren't mapped so aren't included," O'Donoghue writes. "More space missions would be a good idea." Agree! Below, another one of O'Donoghue's fantastic videos: Light Speed – fast, but slow #scicomm pic.tw...
Tags: Video, Space, Science, News, Planets, Planetary Science, Donoghue, James O Donoghue, JAXA Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency


Venus Could Have Active Volcanoes

Laboratory experiments have uncovered evidence that Venus might still be volcanically active.Read more...
Tags: Science, Geology, Venus, Planetary Science, Volcanism, Extraterrestrial Volcanism


First Global Map of Titan Reveals a Truly Alien World

Using data gathered by NASA’s Cassini probe, scientists have compiled the first global geologic map of Saturn’s enigmatic moon Titan. The new map reveals a world that’s distinctly familiar, yet completely foreign at the same time. Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Nasa, Saturn, Titan, Cassini, Planetary Science, Saturnian Moons


Mysterious Asteroid May Actually Be the Smallest Dwarf Planet in the Solar System

A new telescopic survey of Hygiea—the fourth largest object in the main asteroid belt—suggests it’s a dwarf planet, due to its surprisingly spherical shape.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Planets, Planetary Science, Dwarf Planets, Hygiea


Mysterious Large Asteroid May Actually Be the Smallest Dwarf Planet in the Solar System

A new telescopic survey of Hygiea—the fourth largest object in the main asteroid belt—suggests it’s a dwarf planet, due to its surprisingly spherical shape.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Planets, Planetary Science, Dwarf Planets, Hygiea


Mars Just Spat Out the InSight Heat Probe

After some hopeful digging, Mars seems to have spat out the InSight heat flow-measuring probe.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Geology, Insight, Mars, Mars Insight, Planetary Science


Fresh Look at New Horizons Data Shows Pluto’s ‘Far Side’ in Unprecedented Detail

When New Horizons zipped past Pluto on July 14, 2015, the NASA spacecraft was only able to observe one side of the dwarf planet. Scientists have now reviewed data collected by New Horizons during its approach and as it traveled away, resulting in the most detailed analysis yet of Pluto’s elusive far side.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Space Exploration, New Horizons, Pluto, Planetary Science, New Horizons Data Shows Pluto


Cosmic Rays May Have Blasted Gigantic Sand Dunes Into Existence on Saturn's Moon Titan

The equatorial dunes on Saturn’s moon Titan are among the most dramatic surface features in the Solar System, but scientists aren’t exactly sure how they formed. New experimental evidence suggests the dunes arose as a result of cosmic rays hitting Titan’s surface ice.Read more...
Tags: Science, Saturn, Titan, Planetary Science, Sand Dunes, Moons, Cosmic Rays


Hayabusa2 Spacecraft Releases Its Final Probe for Exploring Asteroid Ryugu

The tiny Minerva-II2 probe is now en route to the surface of the asteroid Ryugu, having been deployed by Japan’s Hayabusa2 spacecraft on Thursday. It’s the final phase of this wildly successful mission and the last item on the to-do list before the spacecraft makes its journey back to Earth.Read more...
Tags: Japan, Science, Planetary Science, JAXA, Ryugu, Hayabusa2, Ryugu Asteroid


A Neptune-Like Planet Has Been Spotted in a Place Where It's Not Supposed to Exist

An international team of astronomers is reporting the discovery of a Neptune-like planet located some 920 light-years from Earth. Dubbed the “Forbidden Planet” by the researchers, this celestial object is locked in a freakishly close orbit with it host star in a configuration rarely seen. Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Neptune, Planetary Formation, Planetary Science, Planetary Migration, Ngts 4b


With Time Running Out, Hayabusa2 Spacecraft Fails to Drop Target Marker on Asteroid

Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe aborted an attempt to drop a highly reflective target marker on the surface of Ryugu in preparation for its second sample extraction mission. But with surface temperatures rising steadily on the asteroid, the probe is running out of time.Read more...
Tags: Japan, Science, Asteroids, Planetary Science, Ryugu, Hayabusa2


China's Lunar Mission Has Found Mantle Material on the Far Side of the Moon

Scientists in China have released an important first set of results from the Chang’e 4 lunar lander, revealing what appears to be material from the Moon’s mantle on its far side.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, China, Change, Astrophysics, Planetary Science, Chang, Lunar Science, Change 4, Lunar Mission Has Found Mantle Material


A Martian Dust Devil Swept Right Over NASA’s InSight Lander

The InSight lander seems to have been hit by one of Mars’ famous dust devils, but don’t worry—the NASA probe is just fine. If anything, the sudden blast of wind helped to clear off some annoying dust that had been collecting on the probe’s solar panels. The passing wind vortex also produced some cool science.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Insight, Mars, Planetary Science, Insight Lander, Dust Devils, Insight Mission, Weather On Mars


Water Worlds Could Have Mind-Bogglingly Deep Oceans, New Models Suggest

Scientists have good reason to believe that so-called water worlds—exoplanets with surfaces covered entirely by a single gigantic ocean—are common in the galaxy. But a new computer simulations suggests that not only are water worlds prevalent, they’re also teeming with water—and at mind-boggling scales. Imagine oceans…Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Exoplanets, Planetary Science, Computer Simulations, Water Worlds


Possible Marsquake Detected by NASA’s InSight Lander

Using its ultra-sensitive seismometer, NASA’s InSight lander has waited patiently to detect its first marsquake. Scientists now have good reason to believe it finally happened.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Geology, Mars, Planetary Science, Insight Lander, Marsquakes, Insight Mission


Planet Mercury Has Solid Inner Core About the Same Size as Earth's

A new analysis has found that Mercury has a solid inner core, just like Earth does. And Mercury’s core is just about the same size as our own planet’s. Read more...
Tags: Messenger, Science, Nasa, Earth, Mercury, Planetary Science, Geodesy, BepiColombo, The Best Planet


Watch Israel Make History as It Attempts to Land the Beresheet Probe on the Moon [Update: It Crashed]

Update 4:03 p.m. ET: Unfortunately, the SpaceIL team lost contact with the Beresheet probe. Details here.Read more...
Tags: Science, Israel, Moon, Planetary Science, Rovers, Lunar Rovers, Beresheet, Beresheet Lander, Lunar Landings


Watch Israel Make History as It Attempts to Land the Beresheet Probe on the Moon

On Thursday afternoon, the Beresheet probe will attempt to land on the lunar surface. If all goes well, the achievement will make Israel just the fourth country to have placed a probe on the Moon. You can watch the action live right here, with coverage from SpaceIL starting at 2:30 p.m. ET (11:30 a.m. PT).Read more...
Tags: Science, Israel, Moon, Planetary Science, Rovers, Lunar Rovers, Beresheet, Beresheet Lander, Lunar Landings


Curiosity Rover Spots a Pair of Solar Eclipses on Mars

There’s something completely sublime about watching solar eclipses from the surface of another planet, as showcased in these new videos captured by NASA’s Curiosity rover.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Mars, Curiosity Rover, Planetary Science, Phobos, Deimos


Curiosity Rover Detected Methane on Mars in 2013, a New Analysis Confirms

NASA’s Curiosity rover shook the science community six years ago when it apparently detected traces of methane—an important chemical linked to life—on Mars. Researchers failed to confirm these results in the years that followed, but that’s now changed thanks to a re-analysis of data collected from orbit.Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Mars, Methane, Curiosity, Planetary Science, Martian Habitability, Mars Express


NASA's Mars-Bound Helicopter Passes Critical Flight Tests In Extreme Conditions

Six-wheeled rovers on Mars are great, but imagine a helicopter flying through the thin Martian air. Darting from location to location, the craft would give us a bird’s eye view of the Red Planet. To test the feasibility of this idea, NASA will be sending a rotary-wing aircraft to Mars, and as recently concluded flight…Read more...
Tags: Science, Nasa, Space Exploration, Mars, Planetary Science, Choppers On A Red Planet, Helicopters On Mars


Wildly Spinning Asteroid Caught In the Throes of Self-Destruction

With its long, bright tail, this object bears an uncanny resemblance to a comet, but it’s actually an active asteroid. New observations suggest the asteroid is spinning so quickly that it’s starting to break down and crumble, in what is a relatively rare cosmological phenomenon.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Asteroids, Planetary Science, Asteroids Incapable Of Keeping It Together


Saturn's Ravioli-Shaped 'Ring Moons' May Have Formed From a Giant Impact

During the final days of the legendary Cassini mission, the NASA spacecraft performed a series of ring-skimming orbits around Saturn, snapping unprecedented images of the gas giant’s enigmatic ring moons. These photos and other data have now been analyzed by astronomers, shedding new light on these elusive objects and…Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Nasa, Saturn, Cassini, Planetary Science, Moons, Saturnian Moons, Orbital Rings


Formation of Dark Vortex on Neptune Captured For the Very First Time

Late last year, astronomers detected the sixth known dark vortex on Neptune. This time, however, scientists were able to chronicle the formation of this swirling storm over the course of several years, offering new insights into these enigmatic and ephemeral weather features.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Neptune, Planetary Science, Ice Giants, Dark Vortex


The Hayabusa2 Mission to Asteroid Ryugu Just Dropped Its First Scientific Results

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Hayabusa2 mission has released its first batch of scientific results on asteroid Ryugu—and it’s revealed a bunch of surprises about the small, spinning rock.Read more...
Tags: Astronomy, Science, Nasa, Asteroids, Planetary Science, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA, Ryugu, Hayabusa2