NASA Selects Teams To Study Our Moon, Mars’ Moons, And More

NASA has selected eight new research teams to collaborate on research into the intersection of space science and human space exploration as part of the Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI). “The discoveries these teams make will be vital to our future exploration throughout the solar system with robots and humans,” said Lori Glaze, …Read More

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NASA Selects Caltech-Led Lunar Mission As A Finalist

NASA has selected a Caltech-led mission to send a small satellite to quantify and study water on the Moon. The project is one of three finalists selected from more than a dozen proposals for small satellite missions – at least one of which is expected to move to final selection and flight. The Lunar Trailblazer …Read More

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New Camera System To Offer High-Resolution Images And Video Of Lunar Landings

A new spacecraft-mounted camera system funded by NASA is poised to return the first high-resolution video of a landing plume as it lands on the Moon.  The Heimdall camera system project, headed by Planetary Science Institute Senior Scientist R. Aileen Yingst, consists of four color cameras and a DVR to store images until they can …Read More

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Astrobotic Awarded NASA Study Contract For Polar Mission To The Moon

Astrobotic is one of two companies selected by NASA’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program to study the first payload delivery mission to the South Pole of the Moon. The mission would deliver NASA payloads to investigate lunar volatile elements such as hydrogen and oxygen, which could one day be used by NASA and the …Read More

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NASA’s Psyche Mission Has A Metal World In Its Sights

Designed to explore a metal asteroid that could be the heart of a planet, the Psyche mission is readying for a 2022 launch. After extensive review, NASA Headquarters in Washington has approved the mission to begin the final design and fabrication phase, otherwise known as Phase C. This is when the Psyche team finalizes the …Read More

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West Virginia University Takes Top Prize In NASA Competition To Extract Water On The Moon And Mars

Teams of university students from across the country ‘drilled’ into technology challenges that NASA needs to solve before establishing a sustained human presence on the Moon as part of the agency’s Artemis program. Similar solutions could eventually be used on Mars. Since 2017, NASA has engaged students in exploring ways to harvest water from existing …Read More

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NASA Invites Public To Help Asteroid Mission Choose Sample Site

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission to the asteroid Bennu needs extra pairs of eyes to help choose its sample collection site on the asteroid – and to look for anything else that might be scientifically interesting. The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has been at Bennu since December 3, 2018, mapping the asteroid in detail, while the mission team searches …Read More

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Meteoroid Strikes Eject Precious Water From Moon

Researchers from NASA and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, report that streams of meteoroids striking the Moon infuse the thin lunar atmosphere with a short-lived water vapor. The findings will help scientists understand the history of lunar water – a potential resource for sustaining long term operations on the Moon …Read More

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OSIRIS-REx Captures Laser 3D View Of Bennu

This colorful new glimpse of asteroid Bennu is the first 3D lidar map created since the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft’s arrival at the asteroid in December 2018. The three-dimensional shape model is based on data gathered by the Canadian Space Agency’s OSIRIS-REx Laser Altimeter (OLA) instrument. To create the image, over 11 million laser pulses were fired …Read More

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SwRI-Led Team Discovers Surprisingly Old Surface On Near-Earth Asteroid

A Southwest Research Institute-led team has discovered that the surface geology on asteroid Bennu is older than expected. Early observations of the near-Earth asteroid (NEA) by NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission indicate a surface that is between 100 million and 1 billion years old. “We expected small, kilometer-sized NEAs to have young, frequently refreshed surfaces,” said SwRI’s …Read More

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