NASA Invests In Concepts Aimed At Exploring Craters, Mining Asteroids

Robotically surveying lunar craters in record time and mining resources in space could help NASA establish a sustained human presence at the Moon – part of the agency’s broader Moon to Mars exploration approach. Two mission concepts to explore these capabilities have been selected as the first-ever Phase III studies within the NASA Innovative Advanced …Read More

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NASA’s Mars 2020 Will Blaze A Trail — For Humans

When a female astronaut first sets foot on the Moon in 2024, the historic moment will represent a step toward another NASA first: eventually putting humans on Mars. NASA’s latest robotic mission to the Red Planet, Mars 2020, aims to help future astronauts brave that inhospitable landscape. While the science goal of the Mars 2020 …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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Lunar Power System Team Wins President’s Award

In preparation of establishing a sustainable presence on the Moon by 2028, NASA is developing new technologies that will let astronauts land, live and explore the surface. In this video, Marc Gibson of NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland describes Kilopower, a power system to enable long-duration stays on planetary surfaces, including the Moon and …Read More

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SWIM Project Maps Potential Sources Of Mars Water

Missions carrying humans to Mars will require on-site resources, and a project led by Planetary Science Institute (PSI) scientists Nathaniel Putzig and Gareth Morgan is mapping the availability of potential shallow water-ice sources across the surface of the Red Planet.  Two teams led by Putzig and Morgan were contracted by NASA to pursue separate mapping …Read More

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NASA Announces Landing Site For Mars 2020 Rover

NASA has chosen Jezero Crater as the landing site for its upcoming Mars 2020 rover mission after a five year search, during which every available detail of more than 60 candidate locations on the Red Planet was scrutinized and debated by the mission team and the planetary science community. The rover mission is scheduled to …Read More

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ScanMars Demonstrates Water Detection Device For Astronauts On Mars

Analogue astronauts have successfully trialed a radar that could help future Mars explorers identify where to dig for water. ScanMars is an Italian experiment that was used to identify subsurface water features in the Mars-like Dhofar region of Oman during the AMADEE-18 analogue mission in February 2018. The results were presented by Alessandro Frigeri of …Read More

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Moon To Mars And Prospecting Challenge Announced

Extended crewed missions to the Moon or Mars begin with finding a water supply. To access that water, NASA will require new technologies to mine through various layers of lunar or Martian soil and into ice deposits buried beneath. NASA is working with the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) in Hampton, Virginia to sponsor the …Read More

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A Fresh Look At Older Data Yields A Surprise Near The Martian Equator

Scientists taking a new look at older data from NASA’s longest-operating Mars orbiter have discovered evidence of significant hydration near the Martian equator — a mysterious signature in a region of the Red Planet where planetary scientists figure ice shouldn’t exist. Jack Wilson, a post-doctoral researcher at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in …Read More

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Prospecting From Orbit

The combination of morphological and topographic information from stereo images from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, as well as compositional data from near-infrared spectroscopy has been proven to be a powerful tool for understanding the geology of Mars. Beginning with the OMEGA instrument on the European Space Agency’s Mars Express orbiter in 2003, the surface of …Read More

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