Outer Planets

Addressing NASA’s Plutonium Problem

Addressing NASA’s Plutonium Problem

Yet another positive aspect of NASA’s highly successful New Horizons probe is the fact that it is focusing attention on one of the biggest gaps in fulfilling some of the space agency’s long term plans; the lack of a coherent policy regarding space nuclear power. New Horizons, like Cassini at Saturn and the Curiosity rover […]

Posted in: Congress, NASA, Outer Planets
At Ceres, NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft Spirals Closer for a Summer Finale

At Ceres, NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft Spirals Closer for a Summer Finale

Topographic map of Ceres. Purple is low, red is high.  Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA   As  July draws to a close and August begins, the cycle of the seasons can seem to be advancing quicker than ever. Even with some of the hottest weeks yet come, and Labor Day more than a full month away, the prevalence […]

Posted in: Asteroids, Outer Planets
New Horizons Sails Past Pluto

New Horizons Sails Past Pluto

Most Recent Image of Pluto Taken Before Flyby: Credit NASA/SWRI Fifty years to the day after NASA’s Mariner 4 took the first images of another planet from deep space as part of its flyby of Mars, the space agency’s New  Horizons probe has sailed past the point of its closest approach to the planet Pluto. […]

Posted in: NASA, Outer Planets
The Strange Dance of Pluto’s Moons

The Strange Dance of Pluto’s Moons

Credits: NASA/ESA/A. Feild (STScI) NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft is still 6 weeks away from its Bastille Day flyby of former planet Pluto, but based on new data gathered by researchers using the Hubble Space Telescope,  it will have an opportunity to provide an up close view of the strange dance being called by the former […]

Posted in: NASA, Outer Planets
Imaging Icy Worlds: Dawn, Cassini and New Horizons Promise a Hot Summer

Imaging Icy Worlds: Dawn, Cassini and New Horizons Promise a Hot Summer

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute 2015 is shaping up as a banner year for imaging icy worlds.  The ion powered Dawn probe arrived at the Dwarf planet Ceres in the Main Asteroid Belt on March 6th, and is currently on that world’s shadowed side, still firing its engines as it seeks a circular science orbit […]

Posted in: Asteroids, Outer Planets
Titan’s Seas

Titan’s Seas

The Sun Shines on Titan’s Seas : Image NASA/JPL-CalTech/Univ. Arizona/Univ. Idaho The movie Interstellar took the crew of the Endurance to an ocean world with giant, wormhole driven waves, and then a frozen wasteland of a planet which left many audience members looking for a marauding Wampa snow beast. The point of departure for all […]

Posted in: Outer Planets
Cassini Journals: A Shocking Encounter at Hyperion and an Ocean on Mimas

Cassini Journals: A Shocking Encounter at Hyperion and an Ocean on Mimas

A Shocking Encounter at Hyperion:  NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute This week brought two new findings from the Cassini spacecraft in the Saturn system. The first involved data from a September 26, 2005 flyby of Saturn’s bizarrely shaped moon Hyperion. According to new analysis, during the approach, Cassini was struck by a beam of electrons coming from […]

Posted in: Outer Planets
Europa Clipper: Cubesats But No Nuclear Power

Europa Clipper: Cubesats But No Nuclear Power

Artists Concept: Image CredIt JPL One recurring theme in coverage from Innerspace.net is a lamentation over the lack of any flagship class outer planet mission to follow in the wake of the spectacularly successful Cassini/Huygens mission to Saturn. While Innerspace is predominately focused on human exploration and settlement, and in particular the contributions being made […]

Posted in: Outer Planets
Cassini Finds Strange Feature in Titan’s Sea

Cassini Finds Strange Feature in Titan’s Sea

Three images show an unusual feature in Titan’s sea. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASI/Cornell Note: Yet another in a long series of intriguing findings from the Cassini spacecraft operating in the Saturn system, and another reason to bemoan the lack of any planned follow up to this groundbreaking spacecraft. From JPL News: “NASA’s Cassini spacecraft is monitoring the […]

Posted in: Outer Planets
Cassini Captures Shining Mimas Against the Shadow of Saturn’s Rings

Cassini Captures Shining Mimas Against the Shadow of Saturn’s Rings

Although Innerspace.net tends to focus on Mars as the most inhabitable planet outside Earth, Saturn’s system holds a unique fascination, much of it due to the amazing Cassini space probe. It is also the case because even though it is much further out than Jupiter and its many moons, Saturn’s system does not present the […]

Posted in: Outer Planets
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