If all remains on track, a new Chinese Moon mission, Chang’e‐4, will be launched in late 2018 to attempt the first farside landing in history, headed for the Von Kármán crater, within the South Pole‐Aitken (SPA) basin. The scientific instruments of China’s farside spacecraft, mounted on a lander and a rover, will analyze both […]

  NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is now performing Sol 2140 duties, and there’s confirmation of new drilling. “Success at Pettegrove Point,” reports Catherine O’Connell-Cooper, a planetary geologist at the University of New Brunswick, New Brunswick, Canada. On our third attempt at drilling within the Pettegrove Point member on the Vera Rubin Ridge, we have success! […]

  The U.S. Air Force X-37B mini-space plane has winged past 340 days of flight performing secretive duties during the program’s fifth flight. Labeled the Orbital Test Vehicle (OTV-5), the robotic craft was rocketed into Earth orbit on September 7, 2017 atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 booster from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space […]

  The European Space Agency (ESA) and Russia are working together to investigate the Moon’s resources – specifically water ice and other volatiles at the lunar poles. Called the Package for Resource Observation and in-Situ Prospecting for Exploration, Commercial exploitation and Transportation (PROSPECT), this package will access and assess potential resources on the Moon and […]

  On June 18, 2018, U.S. President Trump directed the Department of Defense to immediately begin the important process of establishing Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces. “I’m hereby directing the Department of Defense and Pentagon to immediately begin the process necessary to establish a space force as the sixth branch […]

NASA’s Curiosity rover is now performing Sol 2136 duties. Sarah Lamm, a planetary geologist at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico reports that after two sols of analyzing an intended drill site in the Pettegrove Point member, plans are to drill the target “Stoer.” Stoer has had Mastcam, Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), Alpha […]

    Here’s an upshot from Blue Origin work in landing the group’s New Shepard suborbital rocketry. NASA has announced new partnerships to develop space exploration technologies. A new award to Blue Origin is to advance sensor technologies to enable landing anywhere on the Moon’s surface. This project will mature critical technologies that enable precision […]

    For the first time since NASA retired its space shuttle fleet in 2011, American astronauts will once again launch to the International Space Station from U.S. soil. The U.S. space agency on August 3 named the teams of astronauts who will fly aboard the first “commercial crew missions” to and from low Earth […]

  A new sweeping assessment from the National Academies regarding future space exploration planning has noted its concern about the aging infrastructure orbiting Mars, which is vital for communicating with the landers and rovers, on the surface of the Red Planet. NASA currently operates Mars Odyssey, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), and Mars Atmosphere and Volatile […]

Now in Sol 2134 Third time’s a charm? That’s the question posed by Rachel Kronyak, a planetary geologist at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. “After a weekend full of contact science, remote science, and driving, Curiosity arrived at her next drill site within the Pettegrove Point member,” Kronyak adds. “Our previous two drilling attempts […]

Griffith Observatory Event