News Articles for 2009

Spirit rover

December 31, 2009

NASA's Mars Rover has Uncertain Future as Sixth Anniversary Nears

NASA's Mars rover Spirit will mark six years of unprecedented science exploration and inspiration for the American public on Sunday.

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December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy 2010 from the Cassini Equinox mission.

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Space montage celebrates 2010

December 30, 2009

Five Tips for a Space-Smart 2010

The NASA/JPL Education Office is ringing in the New Year with some educational tips for students, educators and families.

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Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (Artist's Concept)

December 29, 2009

NASA's WISE Space Telescope Jettisons Its Cover

NASA's recently launched Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer opened its eyes to the starry sky today, after ejecting its protective cover.

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The moon, Venus, and an asteroid

December 29, 2009

NASA Chooses Three Finalists for Future Space Science Mission to Venus, an Asteroid or the Moon

NASA has selected three proposals as candidates for the agency's next space venture to another celestial body in our solar system.

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Artist concept of NASA's Cassini spacecraft flying by the north polar region of Saturn's moon Titan on Dec. 27.

December 24, 2009

Cassini Spacecraft to Monitor North Pole on Titan

Though there are no plans to investigate whether Saturn's moon Titan has a Santa Claus, NASA's Cassini will zoom close to Titan's north pole this weekend.

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Saturn's moons spin around the planet

December 23, 2009

Cassini Holiday Movies Showcase Dance of Saturn's Moons

Like sugar plum fairies in "The Nutcracker," the moons of Saturn performed a celestial ballet before the eyes of NASA's Cassini spacecraft.

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Planets form around a young star in this artist's concept. Using the Keck Interferometer in Hawaii, astronomers have probed the structure of a dust disk around MWC 419 to within 50 million miles of the star. Credit: David A. Hardy/www.astroart.org

December 23, 2009

Keck Telescopes Gaze into Young Star's 'Life Zone.'

An astronomy team that includes JPL scientists has probed the inner structure of a dust disk around a star using the Keck Interferometer.

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An artist's concept portrays a NASA Mars Exploration Rover on the surface of Mars.

December 22, 2009

Right-Front and Right-Rear Wheels Sit Out Latest Drive

Spirit's drive on Sol 2120 (Dec. 19, 2009) included commands for using all six wheels.

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Infrared image of WISE launch

December 22, 2009

Prepping WISE to Pop Its Lens Cap

Engineers are getting ready to eject the cover on NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, which launched from Vandengerg Air Force Base, Calif., on Dec. 14.

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Illustration of Earth core data

December 22, 2009

As the World Churns

NASA Research Confirms Complex Motions of Earth's Churning, Burning Liquid Core

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Artist's concept of AcrimSat

December 21, 2009

AcrimSat Celebrates 10 Years of Measuring the Sun's Energy

A JPL satellite launched 10 years ago this week continues to improve climate change predictions by tracking how much of the sun's energy reaches Earth.

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three-frame animation of Spirit

December 17, 2009

Right-Front Wheel Rotations

Spirit's right-front wheel, which had stopped operating in March 2006, revolved with apparently normal motion during the first three of four driving segments on Sol 2117 (Wednesday, Dec. 16) but stopped early in the fourth segment of the drive.

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This image shows the first flash of sunlight reflected off a lake on Saturn's moon Titan.

December 17, 2009

Glint of Sunlight Confirms Liquid in Northern Lake District of Titan

NASA's Cassini Spacecraft has captured the first flash of sunlight reflected off a lake on Saturn's moon Titan, confirming the presence of liquid on the part of the moon dotted with many large, lake-shaped basins.

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The constellation Aquila

December 17, 2009

Dark Heart of the Eagle

The Herschel Space Observatory, a European Space Agency mission with important NASA/JPL participation, has revealed a surprising amount of activity in the Eagle nebula.

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Guatemala's Lake Atitlan

December 17, 2009

New Results from a Terra-ific Decade in Orbit

At the age of 10, NASA's flagship Terra spacecraft continues to enrich our understanding of Earth's ocean, land and atmosphere.

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California's Mono Lake

December 17, 2009

California, Nevada Lakes Warming Rapidly

A new JPL study examines the impact recent variability in climate is having on the surface temperatures of large lakes in California and Nevada.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

December 16, 2009

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Resumes Observations

Researchers are receiving new science data from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter after the spacecraft's six science instruments resumed observations today.

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Spirit's right-front wheel

December 15, 2009

Unexpected Wheel-Test Results

Diagnostic tests were run on Spirit's right-rear wheel and right-front wheel on Sol 2113 (Dec. 12, 2009).

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Distribution of mid-tropospheric carbon dioxide

December 15, 2009

NASA Outlines Recent Breakthroughs in Greenhouse Gas Research

Researchers studying carbon dioxide, a leading greenhouse gas and a key driver of global climate change, now have a new tool at their disposal.

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December 15, 2009

Deposits in Martian Trough Point to Complex Hydrological Past

Variations in composition of light-toned deposits in troughs on Mars suggest a diversity of water-related processes.

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WISE launching from Vandenberg Air Force Base

December 14, 2009

NASA's WISE Eye on the Universe Begins All-Sky Survey Mission

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, lifted off over the Pacific Ocean this morning on its way to map the entire sky in infrared light.

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The twin Grace satellites monitor tiny month-to-month changes in Earth's gravity.

December 14, 2009

NASA Data Reveal Major Groundwater Loss in California

NASA data show California's primary agricultural area and major mountain water source lost nearly enough groundwater since fall 2003 to fill America's largest reservoir.

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The tower around the Delta II rocket carrying WISE has been rolled back

December 14, 2009

WISE has launched!

WISE has launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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Artist's concept of Cassini's Titan flyby

December 11, 2009

Magnetic Dance of Titan and Saturn To Be Main Attraction during Flyby

When it flies by Saturn's largest moon, Titan, this weekend, NASA's Cassini spacecraft will study the interactions between the magnetic field of Saturn and Titan.

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Students from Crescenta Valley High School swept the awards, winning first, second and third place in the annual competition

December 11, 2009

Local High School Wins Invention Challenge

Crescenta Valley High School, located several miles from JPL, picked up top honors at the annual Invention Challenge, held today at JPL.

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WISE in the fairing mate

December 10, 2009

WISE Launch Rescheduled for December 14

The launch of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) is now rescheduled for Dec. 14.

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An artist's concept of a NASA Mars Exploration Rover

December 10, 2009

Rear Wheel Trouble Continues

Results of diagnostic tests on Spirit's right-rear wheel on Sol 2109 (Dec. 8, 2009) continue to indicate a troubled wheel, which may leave the rover with only four operable wheels.

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Global View of Iapetus' Dichotomy

December 10, 2009

Reddish Dust and Ice Migration Darken Saturn's Moon Iapetus

New views of Saturn's moon Iapetus accompany papers that detail how reddish dust swept up on the moon's orbit around Saturn.

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December 10, 2009

Climate Change Rains Down on JPL Undergrads

Two JPL college interns delving into California's rainfall records have uncovered some interesting findings that may be linked to climate change.

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WISE in the fairing mate

December 9, 2009

WISE Launch Delayed 24 Hours

Liftoff of a Delta II rocket and its NASA payload, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), has been delayed 24 hours.

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Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (Artist's Concept)

December 9, 2009

NASA's WISE Set to Blast Off and Map the Skies

The countdown clock is ticking, with just days to go before the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, rockets into space on a mission to map the entire sky in infrared light.

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This movie shows new details of a jet stream that follows a hexagon-shaped path and has long puzzled scientists.

December 9, 2009

Saturn's Mysterious Hexagon Emerges from Winter Darkness

Cameras aboard NASA's Cassini spacecraft have captured the most detailed images yet of the intriguing hexagon shape crowning the planet.

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The Perseid meteor shower

December 9, 2009

Best (Meteor) Shower of 2009 - No Towel Required

Bundle up and get ready to watch a fiery lightshow stirred up by dead comets in Earth's upper atmosphere during the cold of winter in the dead of night.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

December 8, 2009

Spacecraft Out of Safe Mode

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter today has been taken out of the precautionary "safe mode" it had been in since August.

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An artist's concept of a NASA Mars Exploration Rover

December 7, 2009

Further Tests Designed for Rover's Right-Rear Wheel

A series of diagnostic tests on Spirit's right-rear wheel on sols 2104 and 2105 (Dec. 3 and 4) investigated stalls that occurred on Sol 2099 (Nov. 28) and earlier.

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Images from JPL's Invention Challenge

December 7, 2009

Watch Live as Kids Test Their Inventions in Annual Challenge

Tune in to see middle- and high-school teams showcase their inventions -- cardboard bridges capable of carrying up to 235 pounds (107 kilograms) -- in this year's Invention Challenge hosted by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

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WISE in the fairing mate

December 4, 2009

WISE Launch Scheduled for Dec. 11

Launch of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California is scheduled for Dec. 11.

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JPL's Art Hammon, seen in infrared.

December 3, 2009

Get 'WISE' About Teaching Infrared

A good way to bring a cool mission like WISE into the classroom is to focus on how we use infrared to study the universe.

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The world's largest image of our Milky Way galaxy

December 3, 2009

Spitzer Unveils Biggest Milky Way View at Adler Planetarium

The world's largest image of our Milky Way galaxy, taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, went on display this week in Chicago.

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NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit

December 1, 2009

Another Stall of Right-Rear Wheel Ends Drive

Spirit's right-rear wheel stalled again on Sol 2099 (Nov. 28, 2009) during the first step of a two-step extrication maneuver.

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Artist's concept of Odyssey

November 30, 2009

Orbiter Puts Itself Into Safe Standby

NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter put itself into a safe standby mode on Saturday, Nov. 28, and the team operating the spacecraft has begun implementing careful steps designed to resume Odyssey's science and relay operations within about a week.

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The northern and southern hemispheres of Titan

November 30, 2009

Scientists Explain Puzzling Lake Asymmetry on Titan

Researchers suggest that the eccentricity of Saturn's orbit around the sun may be responsible for the unusually uneven distribution of lakes over the polar regions of the planet's largest moon, Titan.

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WISE in the fairing mate

November 30, 2009

WISE Snug in Its Nose Cone

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer has been wrapped in the outer nose cone, or "fairing," that will protect it during its scheduled Dec. 9 launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit

November 25, 2009

No Wheel Stall in Diagnostic Drive

On Sol 2095 (Tuesday, Nov. 24), Spirit performed a set of diagnostic actions related to a stall of the right-rear wheel on the previous drive, three days earlier.

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Saturn and its moon Prometheus

November 25, 2009

Prometheus Plays Tug of War with One of Saturn's Rings

The diminutive moon Prometheus whips gossamer ice particles out of Saturn's F ring in this image taken by the Cassini spacecraft on Aug. 21, 2009.

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View of the Earth as seen by Apollo 17

November 25, 2009

New Report Provides Update on Recent Climate Changes

JPL researcher Eric Rignot contributed to "The Copenhagen Diagnosis," a new report that synthesizes pertinent climate research over the past four years.

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Gullies and flow features on crater wall on Mars

November 25, 2009

Gullies and Flow Features on Crater Wall

This image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a sample of the variety and complexity of processes that may occur on the walls of Martian craters, well after the impact crater formed.

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Cassini Captures Ghostly Dance of Saturn's Northern Lights

November 24, 2009

Cassini Captures Ghostly Dance Of Saturn's Northern Lights

In the first video showing the auroras above the northern latitudes of Saturn, Cassini has spotted the tallest known "northern lights" in the solar system, flickering in shape and brightness high above the ringed planet.

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The Big Thaw? NASA Satellites Detect Unexpected Ice Loss in East Antarctica

November 24, 2009

The Big Thaw? NASA Satellites Detect Unexpected Ice Loss in East Antarctica

A new study using NASA satellite data finds East Antarctica's ice sheet may not be as stable as previously thought.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

November 24, 2009

Team Plans Uplink of Protective Files

The team operating NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter plans to uplink protective files to the spacecraft next week as one step toward resuming the orbiter's research and relay activities.

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Artist's concept of QuikScat

November 23, 2009

NASA Assessing New Roles for Ailing QuikScat Satellite

NASA mission managers are assessing options for future operations of the venerable QuikScat satellite following the age-related failure of a mechanism that spins the scatterometer antenna.

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two young brown dwarfs

November 23, 2009

Spitzer Telescope Observes Baby Brown Dwarf

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has contributed to the discovery of the youngest brown dwarf ever observed -- a finding that, if confirmed, may solve an astronomical mystery about how these cosmic misfits are formed.

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Free Spirit

November 23, 2009

Free Spirit: Third Extrication Drive Ends With Wheel Stall

Spirit experienced a wheel stall with the right-rear wheel during the second step of a two-step drive on Sol 2092 (Saturday, Nov. 21).

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Wise at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

November 23, 2009

WISE a Bit Closer to the Sky

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, is now perched atop its rocket in preparations for a Dec. 9 liftoff.

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Unprocessed image from Cassini's Enceladus flyby

November 21, 2009

Cassini Sends Back Images of Enceladus as Winter Nears

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has sailed seamlessly through the Nov. 21 flyby of Saturn's moon Enceladus and started transmitting uncalibrated temperature data and images of the rippling terrain.

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Artist's concept of NASA's Kepler space telescope.

November 20, 2009

Popular Science and Popular Mechanics Magazines Honor Kepler

NASA's planet-hunting Kepler space telescope has earned the 2009 Best of What's New Grand Award from Popular Science and a 2009 Breakthrough Award from Popular Mechanics.

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Artist's concept of Cassini's Nov. 21, 2009, Enceladus flyby

November 19, 2009

Before Darkness Falls: Cassini to Scan Enceladus on Winter's Cusp

NASA's Cassini spacecraft will fly by Saturn's moon Enceladus this weekend for a last peek at the intriguing "tiger stripes" before winter darkness blankets the area for several years.

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Artist's concept of the bubble of our sun's influence

November 19, 2009

Cassini's Big Sky: The View from the Center of Our Solar System

When NASA's Cassini spacecraft began orbiting Saturn five years ago, a dozen highly-tuned science instruments set to work surveying, sniffing, analyzing and scrutinizing the Saturnian system.

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Spirit photographs her underbelly

November 18, 2009

Second Planned Extrication Drive is Straight Ahead Again

Because the first extrication drive for Spirit, on Sol 2088 (Nov. 17), stopped as soon as it began due to an exceeded tilt limit, the plan for an extrication drive on Sol 2090 (Nov. 19) will essentially be a repeat of the first drive plan, but with improved rover attitude knowledge.

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WFPC-2 on display at the Smithsonian

November 18, 2009

NASA Provides Venerable Hubble Hardware to Smithsonian

Two key instruments from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have a new home in the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington after being returned to Earth aboard space shuttle Atlantis last May.

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Spirit photographs her underbelly

November 17, 2009

Tilt Parameters End First Extrication Drive

The preliminary results from the first extrication drive for Spirit on Sol 2088 (Nov. 17, 2009) indicate the rover stopped less than 1 second after it began, sensing more vehicle lateral tilt than permitted.

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NASA and Microsoft Allow Earthlings to Become Martians

November 17, 2009

NASA and Microsoft Allow Earthlings to Become Martians

NASA and Microsoft Corp. of Redmond, Wash., have collaborated to create a Web site for Internet users to advance their knowledge about Mars while having fun at the same time.

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Artist's concept of WISE mapping the infrared sky

November 17, 2009

NASA's WISE Gets Ready to Survey the Whole Sky

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, is chilled out, sporting a sunshade and getting ready to roll.

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Spirit photographs her underbelly.

November 16, 2009

Team Prepares to Uplink Commands to Spirit

Team Prepares to Uplink Commands to Spirit. Today (Monday, Nov. 16), driving commands are being prepared to instruct Spirit to attempt to drive forward.

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A view of Earth from the Rosetta spacecraft

November 13, 2009

Rosetta Completes Final Earth Flyby

On its way to a 2014 rendezvous with comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft, with JPL instruments on board, flew past Earth today to pick up energy.

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Ghostly

November 13, 2009

Ghostly 'Spokes' Puff Out From Saturn's Ring's

Massive, bright clouds of tiny ice particles hover above the darkened rings of Saturn in an image captured by the Cassini spacecraft on Sept. 22, 2009, around the time of Saturn's equinox.

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Artist's concept of Dawn

November 13, 2009

Dawn Enters Asteroid Belt -- For Good

NASA's Dawn spacecraft re-entered our solar system's asteroid belt today, Nov. 13, and this time it will stay there.

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Computer simulation of Spirit's predicament

November 12, 2009

NASA to Begin Attempts to Free Sand-Trapped Mars Rover

NASA will begin transmitting commands to its Mars exploration rover Spirit on Monday as part of an escape plan to free the venerable robot from its Martian sand trap.

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Satellite image of El Niño picking up steam

November 12, 2009

El Nino Picking Up Steam

The latest image from the U.S./European Jason-2 satellite finds a strong wave of warm water heading toward the Americas, fueling El Niño.

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Distal rampart of crater in Chryse Planitia on Mars

November 12, 2009

Distal Rampart of Crater in Chryse Planitia

An example of a rampart crater is the ridge in this image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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WISE surrounded in scaffolding in preparation for freezing its hydrogen

November 11, 2009

WISE Is Chilling Out

Engineers are busy cooling the science instrument on NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE.

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NASA's Great Observatories Examine the Galactic Center Region

November 10, 2009

NASA's Great Observatories Celebrate International Year of Astronomy

A never-before-seen view of the turbulent heart of our Milky Way galaxy is being unveiled by NASA today. This event will commemorate the 400 years since Galileo first turned his telescope to the heavens in 1609.

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November 10, 2009

2012 - A Scientific Reality Check

The manager of NASA's Near-Earth Object Office shares with you the scientific realities surrounding the celestial happenings in the year 2012

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These side-by-side images show the wind speed, direction, and strength of tropical storm Ida.

November 9, 2009

A Late-Season Ida Eyes the Northern U.S. Gulf Coast

Ida, the third hurricane of the 2009 Atlantic season and now a tropical storm, churns through the Gulf of Mexico in this pair of NASA satellite images taken Monday, Nov. 9.

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Imagine Mars logo

November 5, 2009

Take Me Out to the Ballpark - On Mars!

Students in fourth through seventh grade will work to create the ultimate baseball experience "on Mars," even designing the rules for how to play a game on the Red Planet.

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Phoenix in winter

November 4, 2009

Frost-Covered Phoenix Lander Seen in Winter Images

Winter images of NASA's Phoenix Lander showing the lander shrouded in dry-ice frost on Mars have been captured with the HiRISE camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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An infrared image of the young star HR 8799

November 4, 2009

Unsettled Youth: Spitzer Observes a Chaotic Planetary System

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has found a young star with evidence of the same kind of orbital hyperactivity that our planets had before they found their way to the stable orbits they circle in today.

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An unprocessed image of Saturn's moon Enceladus

November 3, 2009

Successful Flight Through Enceladus Plume

Cassini has started sending data back from its Nov. 2 flyby of Saturn's moon Enceladus.

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Full-circle view of Spirit's Troy location on Mars

October 30, 2009

Amnesia-Like Behavior Returns on Spirit

Until Oct. 24, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover had gone more than six months without an episode of amnesia-like symptoms like those that appeared on four occasions earlier this year.

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Artist's concept of Cassini with bat wings

October 30, 2009

Another Halloween Flies By

The Cassini team sends "bats wishes" for a happy, healthy and fun Halloween

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Channels on Mars from Hale Crater

October 28, 2009

Channels from Hale Crater

An image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter of Martian channels suggests ancient impacts released flows.

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Artist concept of orbiter and robots.

October 27, 2009

Robot Armada Might Scale New Worlds

An armada of robots may one day fly above the mountain tops of Saturn's moon Titan, cross its vast dunes and sail in its liquid lakes.

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Charles Elachi and other dignitaries cut the ribbon for JPL's Flight Projects Center

October 26, 2009

JPL's 'Green' Space Flight Building Debuts with Ribbon-Cutting

NASA's "greenest" building to date -- an environmentally friendly Flight Projects Center at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. -- is now open for business, following a ribbon-cutting ceremony today attended by lawmakers and local dignitaries.

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This artist's concept shows a cloudy Jupiter-like planet that orbits very close to its fiery hot star.

October 20, 2009

Astronomers Do It Again: Find Organic Molecules Around Gas Planet

Peering far beyond our solar system, NASA researchers have detected the basic chemistry for life in a second hot gas planet, advancing astronomers toward the goal of being able to characterize planets where life could exist.

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JPL Chemist Adrian Ponce prepares samples

October 19, 2009

JPL Develops High-Speed Test to Improve Pathogen Decontamination

A chemist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., has developed a technology intended to rapidly assess any presence of microbial life on spacecraft.

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NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit recorded this forward view of its arm and surroundings

October 19, 2009

Team Runs Operational Test to Prepare for Extracting Spirit

Engineers using test rovers on Earth to prepare for extracting the sand-trapped Spirit rover on Mars have added a new challenge to their preparations.

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 Launch of Galileo on STS-34 Atlantis

October 16, 2009

Galileo's Jupiter Journey Began Two Decades Ago

NASA's Galileo spacecraft began what would become a 14-year odyssey of exploration 20 years ago this Sunday, Oct. 18.

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Artist's conception of the bubble around our solar system

October 15, 2009

Cassini Data Help Redraw Shape of Solar System

Images from the Ion and Neutral Camera on NASA's Cassini spacecraft suggest that the heliosphere, the region of the sun's influence, may not have the comet-like shape predicted by existing models.

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NASA Celebrates Earth Science Week

October 14, 2009

NASA Celebrates Earth Science Week

Just in time for Earth Science Week, NASA debuts new materials on global climate change to help you talk the talk about the climate of our Third Rock.

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2009 Small Business Symposium

October 8, 2009

NASA to Hold Symposium for Small Businesses

NASA will host its second annual NASA/JPL Small Business Symposium and Awards Ceremony Nov. 16 and 17 at the Marriott Bethesda North Hotel and Conference Center, 5701 Marinelli Rd., Bethesda, Md.

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Layers in the lower portion of two neighboring buttes within the Noctis Labyrinthus formation on Mars are visible in this image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

October 7, 2009

New Set of High-Resolution Mars Images Online

Thousands of image products from 233 recent telescopic observations by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show a diversity of surface shapes and textures on Mars.

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Asteroid Apophis

October 7, 2009

NASA Refines Asteroid Apophis' Path Toward Earth

Using updated information, NASA scientists have recalculated the path of a large asteroid.

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Artist concept of an invisible ring around Saturn

October 6, 2009

NASA Space Telescope Discovers Largest Ring Around Saturn

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has discovered an enormous ring around Saturn -- by far the largest of the giant planet's many rings.

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Steven W. Squyres, principal scientific investigator for NASA's Mars Exploration Rover mission

October 5, 2009

Squyres Wins Carl Sagan Medal for Public Outreach

Steven W. Squyres, the Goldwin Smith Professor of Astronomy and principal scientific investigator for the mission, has received the 2009 Carl Sagan Medal from the American Astronomical Society.

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Space dust as viewed from the Herschel Observatory

October 2, 2009

Herschel's Multi-Hued View of the Sky

A new image from the Herschel Observatory shows off the observatory's talents for seeing multiple wavelengths of light.

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Data from NASA's Aqua satellite

October 2, 2009

JPL Satellite Data on How Pollution Travels Highlighted in New Study

JPL satellite data on the global transport of carbon monoxide are highlighted in a new National Academy of Sciences report on long-range transport of air pollutants.

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artist concept of the Aquarius spacecraft over Earth

October 1, 2009

International Science Teams Selected for Aquarius/SAC-D Mission

NASA and Argentina's Comisión Nacional de Actividades Espaciales (CONAE), with support from the Argentine Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovative Production (MinCyT), have selected additional members of the international scientific investigating team for the Aquarius/Satélite de Aplicaciones Científicas (SAC)-D mission, scheduled to launch in 2010.

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Shuttle Radar Topography Mission image of the Independent State of Samoa (left) and American Samoa (right)

October 1, 2009

Space Radar Reveals Topography of Tsunami Site

The topography of the Samoan Islands, hit by a devastating tsunami on Sept. 29, is highlighted in this pair of images from NASA's Shuttle Radar Topography Mission.

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artist concept of global temperature change

September 29, 2009

The Ups and Downs of Global Warming

Skeptics cite short-term cooling trends as evidence Earth isn't warming. JPL scientist Josh Willis explains why understanding climate change requires a longer view.

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A satellite image of pools of warm water known as Kelvin waves

September 28, 2009

Floundering El Ninos Make for Fickle Forecasts

Scientists agree El Nino is back. But not all El Ninos are created equal, and there's less consensus about the future strength of this year's event.

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NASA spacecraft sees ice on Mars exposed by meteor impacts

September 24, 2009

NASA Spacecraft Sees Ice on Mars Exposed by Meteor Impacts

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has revealed frozen water hiding just below the surface of mid-latitude Mars.

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Water around a fresh lunar crater

September 24, 2009

NASA Instruments Reveal Water Molecules on Lunar Surface

NASA scientists have discovered water molecules in the polar regions of the moon. Instruments aboard three separate spacecraft revealed water molecules in amounts that are greater than predicted, but still relatively small.

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Artist's concept showing a lump of material in a swirling, planet-forming disk

September 23, 2009

NASA's Spitzer Spots Clump of Swirling Planetary Material

Astronomers have witnessed odd behavior around a young star. Something, perhaps another star or a planet, appears to be pushing a clump of planet-forming material around.

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a radar-generated map of the thickness of the layered deposits on Mars

September 22, 2009

Radar Map of Buried Mars Layers Matches Climate Cycles

New, three-dimensional imaging of Martian north-polar ice layers by a radar instrument on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is consistent with theoretical models of Martian climate swings during the past few million years.

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View of Saturn's rings during equinox

September 21, 2009

Cassini Reveals New Ring Quirks, Shadows During Saturn Equinox

NASA scientists are marveling over the extent of ruffles and dust clouds revealed in the rings of Saturn during the planet's equinox last month.

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Artist's concept of the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer

September 18, 2009

In Search of Dark Asteroids (and Other Sneaky Things)

Ninjas knew how to be stealthy: Be dark. Emit very little light. Move in the shadows between bright places.

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Planck's first glimpse at the universe

September 17, 2009

Planck Snaps its First Images of Ancient Cosmic Light

The Planck mission has captured its first rough images of the sky, demonstrating the observatory is working and ready to measure light from the dawn of time.

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Daytime and nighttime temperatures of the lunar south pole

September 17, 2009

A Whole New Way of Seeing the Moon

Temperature maps of the moon from the Diviner instrument on NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter give scientists a chill.

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asteroid Juno

September 16, 2009

Asteroid Juno Grabs the Spotlight

Toward the end of September, the sun will turn a spotlight on the asteroid Juno, giving that bulky lump of rock a rare featured cameo in the night sky.

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enhanced view of storm on Saturn

September 15, 2009

Saturn's Turbulent 'Storm Alley' Sets Another Record

The longest continuously observed thunderstorm in the solar system has been roiling Saturn's atmosphere since mid-January and is still churning now, according to a presentation by a Cassini team scientist at the European Planetary Science Congress in Potsdam, Germany.

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A rover team member checks the tilt of the lightweight test rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

September 14, 2009

Computer Modeling Supplements Dusty Testing

Tests on Earth simulating Spirit's predicament on Mars have reinforced understanding that getting Spirit to rove again will be very difficult.

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north pole of Dione

September 14, 2009

Scientists Discover New Radiation Belt at Saturn

Scientists using the Cassini spacecraft's Magnetospheric Imaging instrument have detected a new, temporary radiation belt at Saturn, located around the orbit of its moon Dione at about 377,000 kilometers (234,000 miles) from the center of the planet.

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The shoebox-sized ENose can monitor for 10 contaminants continuously

September 10, 2009

Electronic Nose to Return from Space Station

Sniffing out any potential contaminants on the International Space Station where it was stationed for the last six months, the JPL-built electronic nose, or ENose, is homeward bound.

Read more

 
The Station fire, which started on Aug. 26, devoured brush in the foothills above JPL on Fri., Aug. 28

September 9, 2009

Spacecraft Talk Continued During JPL Wildfire Threat

As the flames of the raging brush fire dubbed the Station Fire threatened the northern edge of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Saturday, Aug. 29, the managers of NASA's Deep Space Network prepared for the worst.

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Image shows the extent of devastation from the Station fire burning near Los Angeles

September 8, 2009

New NASA Image Shows Extent of Station Fire Burn

The extent of devastation from the Station fire burning near Los Angeles is strikingly visible in this Sept. 6 image from NASA's Terra satellite.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

September 4, 2009

Preventive Care Continues; Science on Hold

During analysis of four safe-mode events this year, engineers for NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter project have identified a vulnerability to the effects of subsequent events.

Read more

 
Titan, seen during Cassini's Mar. 31, 2005, flyby

September 4, 2009

Saturn Moon Could Power 150 Billion Labor Day Barbecues

Since its discovery by Dutch astronomer Christiaan Huygens in 1655, Saturn's most massive moon, Titan, has been known as a place of mystery and intrigue.

Read more

 
Centaurus A galaxy

September 4, 2009

NASA Approves X-ray Space Mission

NASA recently confirmed that the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, mission will launch in August 2011.

Read more

 
Animation of NASA AIRS data showing the concentration and transport of carbon monoxide in smoke from the California Station wildfire

September 3, 2009

Pollution from California Wildfires Spreads Across the United States

Carbon-monoxide-filled smoke from California's Station Fire spreads across the United States in this animation created from data from NASA's Aqua satellite.

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Gullies at the Edge of Hale Crater, Mars

September 2, 2009

Thousands of New Images Show Mars in High Resolution

Thousands of newly released images from more than 1,500 telescopic observations by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show a wide range of gullies, dunes, craters, geological layering and other features on the Red Planet.

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Solar System Ambassadors

September 2, 2009

Calling All Space Buffs!

Do you love space? Are you good about sharing your love of the stars with the public? If so, we want you to become part of a growing network of space enthusiasts who have volunteered as NASA Solar System Ambassadors.

Read more

 
Three polar bears

September 1, 2009

Satellites and Submarines Give the Skinny on Sea Ice Thickness

A new study led by JPL scientist Ron Kwok combines recent NASA satellite data with submarine data to chronicle a nearly half- century history of Arctic ice thickness.

Read more

 
Hurricane Jimena approaches the southern tip of Mexico's Baja peninsula

September 1, 2009

Powerful Hurricane Jimena Steams Toward Baja

The JPL-built Atmospheric Infrared Sounder instrument (AIRS) on NASA's Aqua satellite captured this image of a then Category 4 Hurricane Jimena early on Tuesday, Sept. 1, as the storm approached the southern tip of Mexico's Baja peninsula.

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NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

August 31, 2009

JPL Update

Fire conditions around JPL have continued to improve throughout the day, and the Lab is no longer threatened by the Station Fire.

Read more

 
The station fire in La Canada/Flintridge

August 31, 2009

Smoke From Station Fire Blankets Southern California

A JPL instrument on NASA's Terra satellite captured this Aug. 30 image of smoke plumes from the Station and other wildfires burning throughout Southern California.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

August 28, 2009

Orbiter in Safe Mode Increases Communication Rate

Engineers for NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter project have stepped up the communication rate being received from the orbiter as an early step in the process of determining why the spacecraft spontaneously rebooted its computer on Aug. 26.

Read more

 
This map shows changes in ocean bottom pressure measured by NASA's Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (Grace)

August 27, 2009

From the Moon to Marine Measurements

JPL scientists have applied a gravity calculation method first used on Apollo moon missions to measure pressure at the ocean bottom, shedding new light on our ocean and climate.

Read more

 
Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

August 26, 2009

Mars Orbiter Puts Itself in Safe Mode Again

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter put itself into a safe mode Wednesday morning, Aug. 26, for the fourth time this year, while maintaining spacecraft health and communications.

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full-circle view from the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit

August 25, 2009

Dust Storm Passing Over Spirit

The amount of electricity generated by the solar panels on Spirit has been declining for the past several Martian days, or sols, as a regional dust storm moved southward and blocked some of the sunshine at Spirit's location.

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Triton

August 25, 2009

Flashback to Neptune's Moon Triton

Newly released images commemorate the 20-year anniversary of the Voyager flyby of Neptune's moon Triton on Aug. 24, 2009.

Read more

 
Testing at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory assessing possible maneuvers for the stuck Mars rover Spirit

August 21, 2009

Second Test Rover Added to Driving Experiments

A second, lighter-weight test rover has entered the testing setup at JPL where rover team members are assessing strategy for getting Spirit out of soft soil where it is embedded on Mars.

Read more

 
Mangroves

August 20, 2009

Seeing the Forest for the Trees

Mangroves are a vital but endangered natural resource in many coastal regions. A JPL researcher has completed the first full assessment of Africa's mangrove forests.

Read more

 
Infrared image of Hurricane Bill, acquired from the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder instrument on NASA's Aqua spacecraft.

August 20, 2009

NASA's "A-Train" on Track With Hurricane Research

Whenever tropical cyclones are brewing, researchers around the world catch NASA's A-Train of Earth-monitoring satellites to learn more about them.

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Eyes on the Earth 3-D

August 19, 2009

Your World, In Sharper Focus

New features in NASA's "Eyes on the Earth 3-D" online experience allow users to view the latest data -- some less than a few hours old-- from NASA Earth satellites.

Read more

 
Images from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer spacecraft and the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile.

August 19, 2009

Galaxies Demand a Stellar Recount

For decades, astronomers have gone about their business of studying the cosmos with the assumption that stars of certain sizes form in certain quantities.

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Artist concept of Mars Science Laboratory. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

August 18, 2009

Free Public Lectures Will Preview Next Mars Landing

Two free public programs in Pasadena this week will explain how engineers developed a new landing system for the next Mars mission.

Read more

 
Artist concept of Cassini spacecraft.

August 18, 2009

Cassini's Last Earthly Date Was 10 Years Ago Today

A decade ago today, NASA's Cassini spacecraft flew past Earth at a distance of 1,171 kilometers (727 miles) on its way to an appointment with the solar system's second largest occupant - Saturn.

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a massive collision between rocky, embryonic planets as big as mountain ranges

August 18, 2009

Jumping Asteroids

How our solar system was formed has fascinated scientists and laymen alike for -- well, for a really, really long time. New research may have answered a piece to the puzzle - how big were the first planetesimals?

Read more

 
traverse map for rover Spirit

August 18, 2009

Spirit Hits 2,000

Today marks the 2,000th Martian day, or sol, of what was initially planned as a 90-sol mission on Mars for NASA's Spirit rover.

Read more

 
WISE arrives at Vandenberg Air Force Base

August 17, 2009

NASA's WISE Mission Arrives at Launch Site

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, has arrived at its last stop on Earth -- Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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This is an artist's concept of the Stardust spacecraft beginning its flight through gas and dust around comet Wild 2.

August 17, 2009

NASA Researchers Make First Discovery of Life's Building Block in Comet

NASA scientists have discovered glycine, a fundamental building block of life, in samples of comet Wild 2 returned by NASA's Stardust spacecraft.

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Don Yeomans

August 17, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Comets and Life On Earth

With the recent discovery of the amino acid glycine in the comet dust samples returned to Earth by the Stardust spacecraft, it is becoming a bit more clear how life may have originated on Earth.

Read more

 
An artist's conception of Planck.

August 13, 2009

Planck Sees Light Billions of Years Old

The Planck space telescope has begun to collect light left over from the Big Bang explosion that created our universe.

Read more

 
A test setup at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory for the Spirit rover

August 13, 2009

Planned Rover Test to Run a Week or More

Mars rover team members are planning a long-duration experiment with the test rover at JPL beginning next week.

Read more

 
false-color image of Titan

August 13, 2009

Tropics of Saturn's Moon No Tropical Paradise On Some Days

Astronomers have identified a storm cell on Titan the size of the country of India.

Read more

 
A blind person uses the dielectric elastomer EAP based refreshable Braille display

August 13, 2009

Braille Displays Get New Life With Artificial Muscles

Research with tiny artificial muscles may yield a full-page active Braille system that can refresh automatically and come to life right beneath your fingertips.

Read more

 
depletion of groundwater in northwestern India between 2002 and 2008

August 12, 2009

Satellites Unlock Secret to Northern India's Vanishing Water

Using NASA satellite data, scientists have found that groundwater levels in northern India have been declining by as much as 33 centimeters (1 foot) per year over the past decade.

Read more

 
image of Victoria Crater in the Meridiani Planum region of Mars was taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

August 12, 2009

Mars Orbiter Shows Angled View of Martian Crater

The high-resolution camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has returned a dramatic oblique view of the Martian crater that a rover explored for two years.

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image combining data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and Spitzer Space Telescope shows the star-forming cloud Cepheus B

August 12, 2009

Space Telescopes Find Trigger-Happy Star Formation

A new study from two of NASA's Great Observatories provides fresh insight into how some stars are born, along with a beautiful new image of a stellar nursery in our Milky Way galaxy.

Read more

 
Mars in the August night sky

August 11, 2009

JPL Blog: Five Things About Viewing Mars in August

For the last few years, e-mails have cirulated in August promising wonderful views of Mars. JPL outreach specialist and amateur astronomer Jane Houston Jones is here to set the record straight.

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Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

August 10, 2009

Science Operations Resume

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has been restored to full operations, making intensive science observations of Mars, four days after it unexpectedly switched to its backup computer.

Read more

 
This artist's concept shows a celestial body about the size of our moon slamming at great speed into a body the size of Mercury.

August 10, 2009

Planet Smash-Up Sends Vaporized Rock, Hot Lava Flying

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has found evidence of a high-speed collision between two burgeoning planets around a young star.

Read more

 
a rock called 'Block Island,' the largest meteorite yet found on Mars

August 10, 2009

Meteorite Found on Mars Yields Clues About Planet's Past

NASA's Mars Rover Opportunity is investigating a metallic meteorite the size of a large watermelon that is providing researchers more details about the Red Planet's environmental history.

Read more

 
Artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

August 7, 2009

Orbiter Safe After Computer Swap

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is in safe mode, a precautionary standby status, and in communications with Earth after unexpectedly switching to its backup computer on Thurs. Aug. 6.

Read more

 
sensor like this is being placed inside and around the mouth of Mount St. Helens

August 7, 2009

NASA Goes Inside a Volcano, Monitors Activity

Scientists have placed high-tech "spiders" inside and around the mouth of Mount St. Helens, the site of the most active volcano in the United States.

Read more

 
The Cassini spacecraft captured this image of a small object in the outer portion of Saturn's B ring.

August 7, 2009

Revelations in Saturn's Rings Continue as Equinox Approaches

Saturn continues its march towards its August 11 equinox, recent images captured by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft are revealing new three-dimensional objects and structures in the planet’s otherwise flat rings.

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montage showing Saturn

August 7, 2009

Saturn to Pull Celestial Houdini on August 11

In 1918, magician extraordinaire Harry Houdini created a sensation when he made a 10,000 pound elephant disappear before a mystified audience of over 5,200 at New York's famed Hippodrome theatre.

Read more

 
Panelists reviewed results to date from testing possible maneuvers to use in driving NASA's Mars Rover Spirit.

August 7, 2009

More Testing Before Driving on Mars

A review on Aug. 6 of test results to date yielded a decision to conduct further checkouts in an augmented testing set-up on Earth before beginning to send driving commands to Spirit for attempting to get out of the loose soil where the rover has partially embedded itself.

Read more

 

August 6, 2009

Data From Newest Ocean Satellite Ready for Their 'Close-up'

Fully calibrated, validated data from the NASA-French Space Agency Ocean Surface Topography Mission/Jason-2 satellite are now available, following a year of evaluation.

Read more

 
Artist's concept of NASA's Kepler space telescope.

August 6, 2009

Kepler Detects Atmosphere of Hot World

NASA's planet-hunter Kepler has detected a known planet, demonstrating the telescope's extraordinary capabilities.

Read more

 
Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity confirm that this rock on the Martian surface is an iron-nickel meteorite.

August 6, 2009

Rover Confirms Meteorite on Mars

Composition measurements by NASA's Opportunity rover confirm that this rock on the Martian surface is an iron-nickel meteorite.

Read more

 

August 6, 2009

Triple Asteroid System Triples Observers' Interest

Radar imaging at NASA's Goldstone Solar System Radar on June 12 and 14, 2009, revealed that near-Earth asteroid 1994 CC is a triple system.

Read more

 
These images are some of the first to be taken during Spitzer's warm mission, a new phase that began after the telescope

August 5, 2009

NASA's Spitzer Sees The Cosmos Through 'Warm' Infrared Eyes

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is starting a second career and taking its first shots of the cosmos since warming up.

Read more

 
Artist concept of Aura spacecraft

August 4, 2009

Aura Marks Five Years of Sky-High Atmosphere Research

Five years ago, NASA launched the Aura satellite to study changes in our life-sustaining atmosphere. Look at some of its greatest findings to date.

Read more

 
false-color image of Earth, seen from moon

August 3, 2009

NASA's Moon Mapper Beholds Home

This false-color image of Earth was taken by the Moon Mineralogy Mapper, one of two NASA instruments onboard the Indian Space Research Organization's Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft.

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Block Island in Sight

July 31, 2009

Possible Meteorite Imaged by Opportunity Rover

The Opportunity rover has eyed an odd-shaped, dark rock, about 0.6 meters (2 feet) across on the surface of Mars, which may be a meteorite.

Read more

 
Spirit rover testing

July 30, 2009

Free Spirit Testing Nearing Completion

Mars rover engineers at JPL are winding down testing of different escape maneuvers using a test rover in a sand box filled with soil to mimic the Martian surface.

Read more

 
Jupiter

July 29, 2009

On the JPL Blog: The Lowdown on Jupiter's Black Eye

JPL scientist Glenn Orton recounts how he and his team used a NASA telescope to verify an impact at Jupiter, which was first observed by an amateur astronomer in Australia.

Read more

 
Saturn

July 29, 2009

New Spin On Saturn's Rotation

New meteorological data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft indicates the value for Saturn's rotation period could be more than 5 minutes shorter than previously believed.

Read more

 
Asteroid Watch

July 29, 2009

NASA to Provide Web Updates on Objects Approaching Earth

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is introducing a new Web site that will provide a centralized resource for information on near-Earth objects - those asteroids and comets that can approach Earth.

Read more

 
Swan nebula

July 27, 2009

Warmed Up and Ready to Go

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has put its infrared eyes back on the sky to observe the cold and dusty universe.

Read more

 
Rover team members discuss the next step in preparing for a new phase in testing of possible moves for getting NASA's Mars rover Spirit out of a sandtrap on Mars.

July 24, 2009

Longer Tests Beginning

Mars rover team members have begun a new phase of testing at JPL -- using longer-duration experiments -- in their preparations for driving Spirit again on Mars.

Read more

 
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has imaged a coiled galaxy with an eye-like object at its center.

July 23, 2009

NASA's Spitzer Images Out-of-This-World Galaxy

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has imaged a wild creature of the dark -- a coiled galaxy with an eye-like object at its center.

Read more

 
Saturn's moon Enceladus

July 22, 2009

Saturnian Moon Shows Evidence of Ammonia

Data collected during two close flybys of Saturn's moon Enceladus by NASA's Cassini spacecraft add more fuel to the fire about the Saturnian ice world containing sub-surface liquid water.

Read more

 
Increasing Resolution

July 22, 2009

Technology to Treat Blindness Earns Award

Wolfgang Fink, senior researcher at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., is part of a Department of Energy-funded consortium that has received one of R&D Magazine's 2009 R&D 100 awards for developing an artificial retina.

Read more

 
Jupiter

July 22, 2009

JPL Blog: All Eyes on Jupiter

JPL scientist Leigh Fletcher describes a rare chance to observe the resulting debris from a space rock that slammed into Jupiter earlier this week.

Read more

 
In this view from behind a test rover, the rear wheels of the rover are turned toward the left, and the left-front wheel is turned toward the the right.

July 21, 2009

Tests on Earth to Help Free Spirit Rover on Mars: Live Webcast, Chat

A live videocast and chat from JPL will give viewers a chance to ask questions of rover team members working to get Spirit rolling again.

Read more

 
Mars Exploration Rover team members tested how altering the order in which individual wheels turn for steering affects how those turns dig the wheels deeper into soft soil.

July 21, 2009

Free Spirit: Next Step: Combinations of Basic Moves

As the Mars rover team uses testing at JPL to evaluate possible ways to drive Spirit out of loose soil on Mars, the team is finishing tests of individual "building block" maneuvers and is about to begin stringing some of those together.

Read more

 
Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa, JPL Director Charles Elachi and Los Angeles DWP General Manager David Nahai

July 20, 2009

JPL, Caltech, City of Los Angeles to Team on Energy/Water Initiatives

The city of Los Angeles, the city's Dept. of Water and Power, and JPL and Caltech announced a first-of-its-kind partnership to establish Los Angeles as a powerhouse for demonstrated energy and water innovation.

Read more

 
Surveyor

July 20, 2009

From the Lab to the Moon

Before astronauts could walk its surface, NASA/JPL's robotic explorers had to fly past, slam into, and land on the moon.

Read more

 
Jupiter

July 20, 2009

New NASA Images Indicate Object Hits Jupiter

Scientists have found evidence that another object has bombarded Jupiter, exactly 15 years after the first impacts by the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9.

Read more

 
This is an artist’s concept of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory.

July 17, 2009

NASA Releases Orbiting Carbon Observatory Accident Summary

A NASA panel that investigated the unsuccessful Feb. 24 launch of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory has completed its report.

Read more

 
In this view from behind a test rover, the rear wheels of the rover are turned toward the left, and the left-front wheel is turned toward the the right.

July 16, 2009

Test Rover Checks Pivoting Technique

The Mars rover team is using a test rover at JPL to assess various extraction techniques that might get Spirit out of the loose soil of "Troy" on Mars.

Read more

 
artist concept of Aura

July 15, 2009

After Five Years, NASA's Aura Shines Brightly

Two JPL instruments that are helping improve our understanding of Earth's atmosphere and global change mark five years in orbit this week.

Read more

 
the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit was taking exposures with different color filters during the 1,919th Martian day

July 14, 2009

Mars Dust Devil Has Colorful Effect in Image Series

Scientists have combined a trio of shots taken seconds apart through different colored filters to create a special-effects portrait of a moving dust devil on Mars.

Read more

 
Gentry Lee

July 14, 2009

JPL Engineer Narrates 'Are We Alone?'

Gentry Lee, a chief engineer for JPL's solar system missions, narrates a two-hour documentary that explores the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe.

Read more

 
Josh Willis

July 13, 2009

NASA JPL Scientist Receives Presidential Early Career Award

Josh Willis, an oceanographer at JPL, has been honored by President Barack Obama with the 2009 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.

Read more

 
Rover team members prepare an experiment for assessing how a test rover moves when embedded in loose soil and commanded to drive backward with wheels turned.

July 13, 2009

Free Spirit: Rover Engineers Test More Maneuvers

Engineers checking possible rover movements to get Spirit out of the "Troy" sand trap on Mars are evaluating how a comparable rover at JPL fares in a crablike backward drive.

Read more

 
galaxy called M74 at three different wavelengths

July 10, 2009

Herschel Instruments Get First Peek at Cosmos

All three of Herschel's instruments have now opened their eyes and collected their first astronomy data.

Read more

 
montage of planets

July 10, 2009

NASA To Provide Education Funding For Museums And Planetariums

NASA has announced a competitive funding opportunity for informal education that could result in the award of grants or cooperative agreements to several of the nation's science centers, museums and planetariums.

Read more

 
Mars Exploration Rover team members prepare a testing setup for the Spirit rover.

July 10, 2009

Tests Evaluating Crabwalk Moves

On firm ground, NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers can make crablike moves by turning all four steerable wheels to the same side angle, then rotating the wheels either forward or backward.

Read more

 
Engineers used straight-backward driving of a test rover on Earth on Wednesday, July 8, as they evaluate maneuvers that might be useful for getting Spirit out of a sandtrap on Mars.

July 8, 2009

Second Rover Test Maneuver Is Backwards

Engineers used straight-backward driving of a test rover on Earth on Wednesday, July 8, as they evaluate maneuvers that might be useful for getting Spirit out of a sandtrap on Mars.

Read more

 
measurements of winter sea ice thickness over Arctic Ocean, 2004 and 2008

July 7, 2009

New NASA Satellite Survey Reveals Dramatic Arctic Sea Ice Thinning

Arctic sea ice thinned dramatically between the winters of 2004 and 2008, with thin seasonal ice replacing thick older ice as the dominant type for the first time on record.

Read more

 
rover driver Paolo Bellutta measures how much the rover moved sideways, downslope, during the maneuver.

July 6, 2009

Rover Extraction Tests Begin

Using a test rover in a sandbox at JPL with special soil simulating Spirit's predicament on Mars, engineers are assessing possible maneuvers for getting Spirit out and onto firmer ground.

Read more

 
mosaic of images from the Surface Stereo Imager camera on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander

July 2, 2009

NASA Phoenix Results Point to Martian Climate Cycles

Favorable chemistry and episodes with thin films of liquid water during ongoing, long-term climate cycles may sometimes make the area where NASA's Phoenix Mars mission landed last year a favorable environment for microbes.

Read more

 
This is a simulated view of ground movement following an earthquake

July 1, 2009

Earthquakes, From Above and Below: Live Chat

Earthquakes: they're among the most frightening and deadly of all natural disasters.

Read more

 
test setup for effort to free Spirit

July 1, 2009

Free Spirit: Rock Under the Belly

Engineers placed a rock underneath the test rover at JPL on July 1, 2009, to more closely simulate Spirit's predicament on Mars.

Read more

 
Hurricane Gustav

July 1, 2009

JPL Blog: Five Things About Hurricanes

JPL scientist Bjorn Lambrigtsen, who goes on hurricane watch every June, lists five thoughts about hurricane research.

Read more

 
Ulysses team members

June 30, 2009

Ulysses Spacecraft Ends Historic Mission of Discovery

Ulysses, a joint NASA and European Space Agency mission, officially ceased operations today, after receiving commands from ground controllers to do so.

Read more

 
Saturn

June 30, 2009

Five Years Ago, Cassini Began Orbiting Saturn

NASA's Cassini mission has been orbiting Saturn for five Earth years as of June 30, 2009.

Read more

 
engineers study test rover in order to trouble-shoot Spirit's situation

June 30, 2009

Free Spirit: Test Rover Rolls In

After several days of preparing a sloped area of soft, fine soil to simulate Spirit's current sandtrap on Mars, the rover team drove a test rover into the material.

Read more

 
World map

June 29, 2009

NASA, Japan Release Most Complete Topographic Map of Earth

NASA and Japan released a new digital topographic map of Earth Monday that covers more of our planet than ever before. The map was produced with detailed measurements from NASA's Terra spacecraft.

Read more

 

June 29, 2009

NASA Wraps Up Icelandic Part of Arctic Ice Radar Mission

NASA's new airborne radars have capped off their Arctic expedition by measuring Iceland's topography and studying the flow of its glaciers and ice streams.

Read more

 
Three-colour far-infrared image of M51, the 'whirlpool galaxy'.

June 26, 2009

Herschel Opens Its Infrared Eyes

The Herschel Space Observatory has snapped its first picture since blasting into space on May 14, 2009.

Read more

 
Artist's concept of Ulysses

June 26, 2009

Ulysses Hears the Siren's Song

Ulysses, a joint NASA and European Space Agency mission, will officially end its operations Monday, June 29.

Read more

 
QuikScat vinyl record illustrating its greatest hits

June 26, 2009

QuikScat's 'Greatest' Hits

NASA's wind-watching QuikScat satellite is 10 years old this month. Take a spin down memory lane and see some of the mission's greatest achievements to date.

Read more

 
Soft soil exposed when wheels of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit dug into a patch of ground.

June 25, 2009

Mars Rover Yielding New Clues While Lodged in Martian Soil

NASA's Mars rover Spirit, lodged in Martian soil that is causing traction trouble, is taking advantage of the situation by learning more about the Red Planet's environmental history.

Read more

 
QuikScat image of a mature North Atlantic extratropical cyclone

June 25, 2009

QuikScat Finds Tempests Brewing In 'Ordinary' Storms

Among QuikScat's greatest achievements in its first decade of operations is its ability to spot hurricane-force winds within commonly occurring extratropical storms.

Read more

 
 Saturn's moon Enceladus

June 24, 2009

Salt Finding From NASA's Cassini Hints at Ocean Within Saturn Moon

For the first time, scientists working on NASA's Cassini mission have detected sodium salts in ice grains of Saturn's outermost ring.

Read more

 
Drought resistant plants on the top floors of JPL's new Flight Projects Center

June 24, 2009

New JPL Building Goes Green for the Gold

When residents of the top floors of JPL's new Flight Projects Center look out their windows down to the roof of the building's auditorium, they won't see black tar.

Read more

 
artist's concept of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

June 23, 2009

Lunar Orbit is Divine for NASA Instrument

Diviner, an instrument that will make the first maps of the temperature on the surface of the lunar polar regions, has entered the moon's orbit aboard NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Read more

 
Improved Infrared Imaging from Changed Odyssey Orbit

June 22, 2009

NASA's Mars Odyssey Alters Orbit to Study Warmer Ground

NASA's long-lived Mars Odyssey spacecraft has completed an eight-month adjustment of its orbit.

Read more

 
Artist concept of QuikScat.

June 18, 2009

JPL Wind Watcher Blows Into its Second Decade

NASA's QuikScat satellite has reached a milestone--10 years of tracking wind speed and direction, and revolutionizing marine weather forecasts.

Read more

 
Topographic image of the moon.

June 18, 2009

NASA Scientists Bring Light to Moon's Permanently Dark Craters

A new lunar topography map with the highest resolution of the moon's rugged south polar region provides new information on some of our natural satellite's darkest inhabitants - permanently shadowed craters.

Read more

 
artist's concept of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

June 17, 2009

JPL Instrument Set for Lunar Orbiter Mission

NASA is scheduled to launch the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, an unmanned mission to comprehensively map the entire moon, tomorrow, June 18.

Read more

 
UAVSAR image of the San Andreas fault in the San Francisco Bay area just west of  San Mateo and Foster City

June 17, 2009

Scientists Search for a Pulse in Skies Above Earthquake Country

A new NASA 3-D airborne radar, capable of seeing below the surface, will study earthquake faults in California.

Read more

 
artist's concept of Herschel in space

June 15, 2009

Herschel's Cover Flips Open

The Herschel observatory has flipped its lid -- the cover protecting the telescope's instruments was successfully removed on June 14, 2009.

Read more

 
Researcher Fang Zhong analyzes ices like those found on Saturn's moon Titan in JPL's Ice Physical Properties Laboratory.

June 15, 2009

Shaken and Stirred: Lab Studies Ice From Frigid Worlds

The most exotic frozen cocktails on Earth won't be found in a chic restaurant or trendy bar. Scientists are mixing up icy concoctions in a laboratory not much bigger than a janitor's closet.

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artist's concept of extrasolar planet

June 12, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Five 'Holy Grails' of Distant Solar Systems

Fridays@5, a new series bringing you five cool ideas from a scientist or engineer, debuts today. First up, JPL and Caltech 's Angelle Tanner lists goals in extrasolar planet research.

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June 12, 2009

Planck Chills Out

A JPL-developed and -built cooler on the Planck spacecraft has chilled the mission's low-frequency instrument down to its operating temperature.

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WISE Project Scientist Peter Eisenhardt stands next to the fully assembled WISE satellite

June 10, 2009

WISE Mission Assembled and Preparing for Launch

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, has been assembled and is undergoing final preparations for a planned Nov. 1 launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

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three baby stars in the bustling center of our Milky Way galaxy

June 10, 2009

Baby Stars Finally Found in Jumbled Galactic Center

Astronomers have at last uncovered newborn stars at the frenzied center of our Milky Way galaxy.

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artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

June 9, 2009

Mars Orbiter Resumes Science Observations

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is examining Mars again with its scientific instruments after successfully transitioning out of a precautionary standby mode.

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Clara Ma signs Curiosity

June 8, 2009

'Curiosity,' Meet Clara

Twelve-year-old Clara Ma flew from Kansas to JPL to meet and sign the next rover that will zoom millions of miles to Mars.

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artist's concept of Dawn in space

June 8, 2009

Dawn Re-Lights the Ionic Fire

Mission controllers at JPL have received a transmission from the Dawn spacecraft confirming it has re-ignited its ion propulsion system.

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artist concept of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

June 4, 2009

Rebooting Resembles February Event

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is in safe mode and in communications with Earth after an unexpected rebooting of its computer Wednesday evening, June 3.

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The tip of the shadow of the moon Tethys is cut off where it crosses Saturn's B ring, demonstrating the variations in density across the planet's rings.

June 3, 2009

Cassini Finds Titan's Clouds Hang on to Summer

Cloud chasers studying Saturn's moon Titan say its clouds form and move much like those on Earth, but in a much slower, more lingering fashion.

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montage of planets

June 3, 2009

NASA Selects Museums and Planetariums to Receive Education Grants

NASA has awarded 13 informal education institutions $6.9 million for creating planetarium shows and exhibits. These institutions will partner with NASA's Museum Alliance, managed by JPL.

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panorama of Spirit rover's underbelly

June 3, 2009

Spirit Takes a Peek at Her Belly

A new image of Spirit's underbelly is helping engineers assess the rover's current state and plan her escape from soft soil.

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latest image of sea surface temperatures from NASA's Jason-1 satellite

June 1, 2009

Ocean Signals Provide Hurricane Season Hints

Hurricane season has now officially kicked off in the Atlantic and Pacific. NASA satellites are providing some hints of the coming season's activity.

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Mars

May 29, 2009

'Cold' Mars Could Have Harbored Liquid Water

A new NASA study provides further evidence that Martian minerals dissolved in water could have kept that water from freezing, even on a cold, early Mars.

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JPL's Aquarius instrument

May 29, 2009

Salt-Seeking Ocean Sensor to Ship South

JPL's Aquarius instrument is prepped for shipment to Argentina June 1. The mission will study how salt affects ocean circulation, the water cycle and climate.

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This artist's concept shows the smallest star known to host a planet.

May 28, 2009

Planet-Hunting Method Succeeds at Last

A long-proposed tool for hunting planets has netted its first catch -- a Jupiter-like planet orbiting one of the smallest stars known.

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new silicon Molecular Beam Epitaxy that can process 8-inch silicon wafers

May 28, 2009

Honey, I Shrunk the Chips

JPL is home to the Microdevices Lab, a world-class facility where spacecraft chips are shrunk in size while growing in capability.

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artist concept of Mars Science Laboratory

May 27, 2009

NASA Selects Student's Entry as New Mars Rover Name

NASA's Mars Science Laboratory rover, scheduled for launch in 2011, has a new name, thanks to a sixth-grade student from Kansas.

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Clara Ma

May 27, 2009

Curiosity

This is the essay submitted by the winner of the Mars Science Laboratory naming contest.

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Space Shuttle Atlantis lands

May 26, 2009

'Camera That Saved Hubble' Returns To Earth

The JPL-built Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 returned to Earth aboard Space Shuttle Atlantis Sunday (5/24/09). The camera was the Hubble Space Telescope's longest serving instrument.

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Artist's concept of Epoxi spacecraft

May 26, 2009

Team Develops New Method to Find Alien Oceans

NASA-sponsored scientists looking back at Earth with the JPL-managed Deep Impact spacecraft have developed a method to indicate whether Earth-like alien (extrasolar) worlds have oceans.

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Artist's concept of the Mars exploration rovers.

May 26, 2009

Opportunity Rolls Past the 10-Mile Mark

In a giant leap for Roverkind, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's odometer clocked past the 10-mile mark (16,133.96 meters) on May 25 (Sol 1897).

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full-circle view of the rover's surroundings

May 21, 2009

NASA Rover Sees Variable Environmental History at Martian Crater

One of NASA's two Mars rovers has recorded a compelling saga of environmental changes that occurred over billions of years at a Martian crater.

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ocean surface current speeds evolving in time

May 20, 2009

Taking Cues from Cubes

JPL scientists are taking their cues from cubes to develop better models of ocean circulation and climate.

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gully channels in a crater in the southern highlands of Mars

May 20, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Got Water?

JPL's Sue Smrekar recounts discoveries by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that have provided new insights into past wet environments on Mars.

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 artist's concept of Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer

May 19, 2009

Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer Coming Together

The science instrument for NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer has been shipped to Boulder, Colo.

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Spirit's wheels digging into soft ground

May 18, 2009

Mars and Earth Activities Aim to Get Spirit Rolling Again

NASA's rover project team is using Spirit and other spacecraft at Mars to find a way for the rover to get dislodged from soft Martian ground.

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Artist's concept of Spitzer Space Telescope

May 15, 2009

NASA's Spitzer Begins Warm Mission

After more than five-and-a-half years of probing the cool cosmos, Spitzer has run out of the coolant that kept its infrared instruments chilled.

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launch of Herschel/Planck

May 14, 2009

Herschel and Planck on Way to Study Our Cosmic Roots

The Herschel and Planck spacecraft successfully blasted into space on May 14 from the Guiana Space Centre in French Guiana.

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astronauts remove Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2f rom Hubble

May 14, 2009

'Camera That Saved Hubble' - Didn't Want to Leave

After struggling with a frozen bolt, spacewalking astronauts removed the JPL-built Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope today (Thurs.).

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Gulfstream G-III

May 14, 2009

Airborne Radar Continues Its Icy Expedition

NASA scientists continue to crisscross Greenland, mapping glaciers with their new airborne radars as their expedition hits full stride.

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Artist concept of Kepler

May 13, 2009

Let the Planet Hunt Begin

NASA's Kepler spacecraft has begun its search for other Earth-like worlds.

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A young sun-like star encircled by its planet-forming disk of gas and dust.

May 13, 2009

Spitzer Catches Star Cooking Up Comet Crystals

Scientists have long wondered how tiny silicate crystals, which need sizzling high temperatures to form, have found their way into frozen comets, born in the deep freeze of the solar system's outer edges.

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image of Rio Grande headwaters region

May 13, 2009

Move Any Mountain

New research from JPL is making it easier to accurately track snowmelt -- water from snowpacks that melt in spring -- in mountainous regions.

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montage of Hubble and astronauts

May 13, 2009

Astronauts to Lift JPL-Built Camera Out of Hubble

Spacewalking astronauts will remove the JPL-built Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope tomorrow (Thurs.).

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Artist concept of the rocket carrying Herschel and Planck

May 12, 2009

Herschel and Planck Almost Ready for Liftoff

Two missions to study our cosmic roots, Herschel and Planck, are stacked atop the same Ariane 5 rocket, waiting to blast into space on Thurs., May 14.

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Spirit's wheels digging into soft ground

May 11, 2009

Soft Ground Puts Spirit in Danger Despite Gain in Daily Energy

The five wheels that still rotate on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit have been slipping severely in soft soil during recent attempts to drive, sinking the wheels about halfway into the ground.

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before and after images of soil moisture

May 11, 2009

NASA's QuikScat Sees Santa Barbara 'Quick Dry'

Hot weather just before the Santa Barbara, Calif., wildfire quickly dried up soil moisture from rain one day prior, contributing to the fire danger.

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shuttle launch

May 11, 2009

Mission to Return JPL-Built Hubble Camera Underway

Space Shuttle Atlantis has lifted on a mission whose goals include extracting and returning the JPL-built Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2.

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planetary nebula known as Kohoutek 4-55

May 10, 2009

Hubble Photographs a Planetary Nebula to Commemorate Decommissioning of Super Camera

The Hubble Space Telescope photographed a planetary nebula to commemorate the decommissioning of a super camera.

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M100 Galactic Nucleus

May 10, 2009

The Camera That Saved Hubble... Twice: JPL's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2

The story and the people behind Hubble's imaging workhorse.

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view of Mars Science Lab model on Photosynth

May 7, 2009

NASA Releases Interactive 3-D Views of Space Station, New Mars Rover

NASA released an interactive, 3-D photographic collection of the International Space Station and a model of the next Mars rover.

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Cassini and NASA sites

May 6, 2009

NASA Wins Two Webby Awards for Internet Excellence

NASA's main site won the People's Voice award for best government Web site and the Cassini mission won for best science site.

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Helix Nebula

May 6, 2009

NASA's Spitzer Telescope Warms Up To New Career

The primary mission of NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is about to end after more than five-and-a-half years of probing the cosmos with its keen infrared eye.

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image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

May 6, 2009

Productive Mars Camera Team Accelerates Releases

Camera-team members are now posting tens of thousands of new image products each month from the high-resolution camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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Gulfstream G-III

May 6, 2009

Airborne Scientists Arrive in the Arctic

Hop aboard and fasten your seat belts as a NASA engineer takes you inside NASA's just-launched Arctic airborne radar expedition.

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artist concept of Herschel and Planck

May 5, 2009

Herschel and Planck Share Ride to Space

Two missions to study the cosmos are scheduled to blast into space May 14 aboard the same rocket from the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana.

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Hourglass Nebula

May 5, 2009

A Universal Art Form: NASA's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2

Throughout history, humanity has been moved by the work of the great artists of their age.

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Venus

May 4, 2009

Happy 20th Birthday To NASA's Magellan Mission!

Launched May 4, 1989, NASA's Magellan spacecraft went on to map 99 percent of the surface of planet Venus.

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NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope Interview

May 4, 2009

If Spitzer Could Talk: An Interview with NASA's Coolest Space Telescope

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is about to use its last drop of the coolant that has chilled it for the past five-and-a-half years.

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Hubble Deep Field

May 4, 2009

Top Five Breakthroughs From Hubble's Workhorse Camera

Here are five things you should know about JPL's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2, which is the oldest and longest working instrument aboard the Hubble Space Telescope.

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model of Mars Science Laboratory

May 4, 2009

Visitors Throng to Annual JPL Open House

More than 30,000 people visited JPL for the annual Open House the weekend of May 2 and 3.

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artist concept of ExoMars

May 4, 2009

NASA Selects JPL Experiment for European Mars Mission

An investigation selected by NASA will help researchers dissect the internal structure of Mars by analyzing variations in the planet's rotation.

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John Casani

April 30, 2009

JPL's John Casani Honored by Air and Space Museum

John Casani of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., has been honored with the National Air and Space Museum's prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Petermann Floating Tongue in north Greenland

April 30, 2009

Arctic Trek to 'Break the Ice' on New NASA Airborne Radars

NASA will 'break the ice' on a pair of new airborne radars that can help monitor climate change when a team of scientists embarks this week on a two-month expedition to the vast, frigid terrain of Greenland and Iceland.

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NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope

April 30, 2009

Why Are Galaxies So Smooth?

New observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope reveal how stars are dispersed in spiral galaxies.

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artist concept of Aquarius

April 29, 2009

Sea Salt Holds Clues to Climate Change

An upcoming NASA mission will track sea salinity, helping scientists monitor and predict climate change.

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NASA's Galaxy Mission Celebrates Sixth Anniversary

April 28, 2009

NASA's Galaxy-Exploring Mission Celebrates Sixth Anniversary

NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer Mission marks its sixth anniversary studying galaxies beyond our Milky Way through its sensitive ultraviolet telescope.

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Roosevelt Middle School

April 28, 2009

NASA-JPL Explorer School Students to Attend National Symposium

Students from Roosevelt Middle School, a NASA Explorer School in Glendale, Calif., will present research results at a national student symposium at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston April 29-May 1.

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Spirit on Mars

April 24, 2009

Spirit Resumes Driving While Analysis of Problem Behaviors Continues

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit drove on Thursday for the first time since April 8, acting on commands from engineers who are still investigating bouts of amnesia and other unusual behavior exhibited by Spirit in the past two weeks.

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montage of events at Open House

April 23, 2009

Live JPL Open House Video/Chat: Next Best Thing to Being There

Don't worry if you can't attend this year's annual Open House at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. - just throw on your fuzzy slippers, switch on your computer and join us for a live video stream and chat.

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artist concept of Aura spacecraft

April 23, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Good and Bad Ozone

There's good and bad ozone, explains JPL's Chris Boxe, and an instrument aboard NASA's Aura spacecraft is helping improve scientists' understanding of this important component in Earth's atmosphere.

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image of Earth

April 22, 2009

Expand Your 'Green' Horizons

Just in time for Earth Day, a new slide show describes things you may not know about our home planet.

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blob of gas named Himiko

April 22, 2009

Spitzer Teams up With Other Telescopes to Find Big Blob

A suite of telescopes, including NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, has discovered a giant blob of gas in the very distant universe.

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NASA's Hubble Space telescope captured an image of gas, dust, and stars

April 21, 2009

Hubble Captures 'Fountain of Youth'

A "cosmic fountain" of stars, gas and dust was photographed with the JPL-built and -developed Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 on Hubble.

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artistic view of Earth

April 21, 2009

NASA Celebrates Earth Day: April 22, 2009

Join NASA and nearly 7 billion of your closest friends in this annual celebration of our planet that marks the importance of being good environmental stewards.

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JPL Invites Public to Annual Open House 2009

April 20, 2009

JPL Invites Public to Annual Open House

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., welcomes the public to its annual Open House on Saturday, May 2, and Sunday, May 3, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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NASA Mars Exploration Rover Spirit

April 20, 2009

Team Continues Analyzing Spirit Computer Reboots and Amnesia Events

After three days of completing Earth-commanded activities without incident last week, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit had a bout of temporary amnesia Friday, April 17, and rebooted its computer Saturday, April 18, behavior similar to events about a week earlier.

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artist concept of white dwarf

April 20, 2009

Solar Systems Around Dead Suns?

Using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, an international team of astronomers has found that at least one in 100 white dwarf stars shows evidence of orbiting asteroids and rocky planets.

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Kepler's full field of view

April 16, 2009

NASA's Kepler Captures First Views of Planet-Hunting Territory

NASA's Kepler mission has taken its first images of the star-rich sky where it will soon begin hunting for planets like Earth.

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dust storm on Mars

April 15, 2009

Mars Spacecraft Teams on Alert for Dust-Storm Season

Heading into a period of the Martian year prone to major dust storms, the team operating NASA's twin Mars rovers is taking advantage of eye-in-the-sky weather reports.

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This image from Apollo 17, and others like it, captured whole hemispheres of water, land and weather.

April 14, 2009

Online Poll for NASA's Greatest Hits for Earth Begins Today

NASA is inviting the public to vote online for the most important contribution the space agency has made to exploring Earth and improving the way we live on our home planet.

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Spirit saw this view of its surroundings

April 13, 2009

Spirit Healthy but Computer Reboots Raise Concerns

The team operating NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit is examining data received from Spirit in recent days to diagnose why the rover apparently rebooted its computer at least twice over the April 11-12 weekend.

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cyclone Nargis

April 13, 2009

NASA Test May Help Forecast Deadly Cyclones

A new NASA-developed approach for modeling tropical cyclones that uses JPL satellite data shows promise for better forecasting the world's deadliest storms.

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Blast experiment

April 8, 2009

Balloon Experiment Catches Half the Universe's Starlight

Jamie Bock of JPL is part of a team that used a balloon-borne experiment called Blast and NASA's Spitzer telescope to hunt for faraway galaxies.

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artist concept of Kepler dust cover coming off

April 7, 2009

Dust Cover Jettisoned From NASA's Kepler Telescope

Engineers have successfully ejected the dust cover from NASA's Kepler telescope, a spaceborne mission soon to begin searching for worlds like Earth.

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This artist's conception shows a young, hypothetical planet around a cool star.

April 7, 2009

Cool Stars Have Different Mix of Life-Forming Chemicals

Life on Earth is thought to have arisen from a hot soup of chemicals. Does this same soup exist on planets around other stars?

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artist concept of Kepler dust cover coming off

April 7, 2009

Kepler Dust Cover Poised for Removal

The dust cover on NASA's Kepler spacecraft is scheduled to be ejected tonight.

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Snow and Ice Data Center show that the Arctic's sea ice cover is continuing to shrink, and is thinning as well.

April 6, 2009

Satellites Show Arctic Literally on Thin Ice

The latest Arctic sea ice data from NASA and the National Snow and Ice Data Center show that the decade-long trend of shrinking sea ice cover is continuing.

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M33, Jupiter's Ghost and Arp 274

April 3, 2009

Deep-Space Images Released for Astronomy Webcast

New NASA/JPL images from two missions and a Hubble camera are being released today as part of an International Year of Astronomy event.

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Cartwheel Galaxy

April 2, 2009

NASA Joins 'Around the World in 80 Telescopes'

A collection of NASA missions will be involved in a live event Friday, April 3, that will allow the public to get an inside look at how these missions are run.

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sea surface temperature

April 2, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Oceans Up Close - From Space

JPL oceanographer Jorge Vazquez explains how satellites help monitor changes in Earth's oceans.

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Fargo, North Dakota

April 1, 2009

Radar Data Show Role of Topography in Fargo Floods

The Red River in Fargo, North Dakota, flows through flat troughs carved by ancient glaciers, contributing to its flooding history, as seen in this February 2000 image.

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Chapman glacier

March 30, 2009

NASA Continues to Advance International Polar Year Science

Although the International Polar Year officially came to a close in February, NASA is continuing to push the frontiers of polar science from space, the air and the surface of ice.

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path of meteors

March 30, 2009

NASA Team Finds Riches in Meteorite Treasure Hunt

Just before dawn on Oct. 7, 2008, an SUV-sized asteroid entered Earth's atmosphere and exploded harmlessly over the Nubian Desert of northern Sudan.

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bright soil on Mars

March 30, 2009

Spirit Churns Up Bright Soil

NASA's Mars rover Spirit exposed bright Martian soil on a recent drive heading southwest.

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close-up of the ionic contractile EAP material

March 25, 2009

Researchers Pump Up Artificial Muscles

Engineers from JPL and around the world are exploring the field of artificial muscles to invent "smart" devices that can grab and move objects.

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Intriguing patterns near Mars' south pole

March 25, 2009

Images of an Unearthly Spring

New images from the high-resolution camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show intriguing patterns near Mars' south pole.

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Hotei

March 24, 2009

Cassini Provides Virtual Flyover of Saturn's Moon Titan

"Fly me to the moon"-to Saturn's moon Titan, that is. New Titan movies and images are providing a bird's-eye view of the moon's Earth-like landscapes.

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artist concept of space exploration

March 24, 2009

JPL and Caltech Partner on Keck Institute for Space Studies

JPL and Caltech are collaborating to address the science and technology needs of future space missions through the W.M. Keck Institute for Space Studies.

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asteroid Ida and its moon Dactyl

March 23, 2009

Live Chat With NASA's Asteroid Trackers

A live videocast and chat from JPL offers a unique opportunity for viewers to ask questions of scientists with NASA's Near-Earth Object Program Office about how NASA discovers and tracks asteroids.

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This artist's conception shows a hypothetical twin Earth orbiting a Sun-like star.

March 19, 2009

JPL Astronomer Assesses Challenges of Finding Life Elsewhere

New research co-led by JPL's Wes Traub discusses how and where NASA's James Webb Space Telescope might look for signs of life.

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Artist concept of Mars Science Laboratory Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

March 18, 2009

Online Poll for NASA's Mars Rover Naming Contest Opens March 23

NASA will post online nine names that are finalists for the agency's Mars Science Laboratory mission and invite the public to vote for its favorite.

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March 18, 2009

NASA Celebrates Sun-Earth Day With Illuminating Webcast

NASA scientists will reveal new information and images about our sun and its influence on Earth and the solar system for Sun-Earth Day, recognized each year in conjunction with the spring equinox.

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North Rim of Endeavour Crater on Horizon

March 18, 2009

One Mars Rover Sees a Distant Goal; The Other Takes a New Route

On a plain that stretches for miles in every direction, the panoramic camera on NASA's Mars rover Opportunity has caught a first glimpse on the horizon of the uplifted rim of the big crater that has been Opportunity's long-term destination for six months.

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students from San Cayetano Elementary School race their robot

March 18, 2009

NASA Explorer Schools Compete in Lego Robotics Contest

Fillmore's San Cayetano Elementary School and Mesa Union School from Somis captured top honors at the 3rd Annual Southern California NASA Explorer Schools Robotics Competition at JPL on Tuesday, March 17.

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Saturn

March 17, 2009

Quadruple Saturn Moon Transit Snapped by Hubble

On Feb. 24, 2009, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took a photo of four moons of Saturn passing in front of their parent planet.

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orbit of 2009 FH, Mar. 17, 2009

March 17, 2009

Asteroid to Fly By Earth Wednesday

A small asteroid will fly past Earth early tomorrow morning (Wed., March 18).

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FIRST Robotics Competition

March 16, 2009

Lunacy Rules at First Robotics Competition

Sixty-one teams from Southern California, Arizona, Brazil and Chile faced off in the Los Angeles regional FIRST Robotics Competition on March 13 and 14.

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This image of a pair of colliding galaxies called NGC 6240

March 16, 2009

Hearts of Galaxies Close in for Cosmic Train Wreck

A new image from Spitzer offers a rare view of an imminent collision between the cores of two galaxies, each powered by a black hole with millions of times the mass of the sun.

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area around Mars polar cap

March 13, 2009

NASA Images in Google's New 'Live from Mars'

Mars Odyssey and other NASA spacecraft supply images seen in Google Earth's tools for viewing Mars, including new features added today.

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students compete in past robotic competitions

March 12, 2009

The Robotic 'Right Stuff'

Watch students compete using LEGO® robots against the clock in a competition at JPL.

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Artwork from

March 12, 2009

NASA Launches 'Eyes on the Earth 3-D'

New interactive features on NASA's Global Climate Change Web site give the public the opportunity to "fly along" with NASA's fleet of Earth science missions and observe Earth from a global perspective in an immersive, 3-D environment.

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artst concept of Cassini spacecraft

March 12, 2009

Cassini Swaps Thrusters

Early this morning the Cassini spacecraft relayed information that it had successfully swapped to a backup set of propulsion thrusters late Wednesday.

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'Cat's Eye' Planetary Nebula

March 12, 2009

Galactic Dust Bunnies Found to Contain Carbon After All

Galactic Dust Bunnies Found to Contain Carbon After All Using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, researchers have found evidence suggesting that stars rich in carbon complex molecules may form at the center of our Milky Way galaxy.

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artist concept of Odyssey

March 11, 2009

Odyssey Spacecraft Reboots Successfully

NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter properly followed commands today to shut down and restart, a strategy by its engineers to clear any memory flaws accumulated in more than five years since Odyssey's last reboot.

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artist concept of Mars Exploration Rover

March 11, 2009

Mars Rovers Earn Congressional Kudos

Congress passed a resolution Wednesday recognizing scientific contributions of NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers, and commending the JPL and Cornell University teams.

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artist concept of Odyssey

March 10, 2009

Rebooting Postponed for Odyssey

The team operating NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter postponed a planned rebooting of the spacecraft this morning after seeing an unexpected rise in the temperature of a star camera that is part of the navigation system.

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Martian Moon Deimos

March 9, 2009

New Views of Martian Moon and Surface

New images from two observations of the Martian moon Deimos and more than 600 observations of Mars, acquired by the high-resolution camera (HiRISE) on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, became available for viewing Monday.

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United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket

March 6, 2009

NASA's Kepler Mission Rockets to Space in Search of Other Earths

NASA's Kepler mission successfully launched into space from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta II at 10:49 p.m. EST (7:49 p.m. PST), Friday, March 6.

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March 5, 2009

NASA's Mars Rover Spirit Faces Circuitous Route

Loose soil piled against the northern edge of a low plateau has blocked Spirit from taking the shortest route toward its southward destinations for the upcoming Martian summer and following winter.

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March 5, 2009

NASA's Kepler Mission Set for Launch

NASA's Kepler mission to seek other Earth-like planets is undergoing final preparations for liftoff Friday, March 6.

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artist concept of Kepler in space

March 5, 2009

Five Things About Kepler

Here are some quick facts about the Kepler mission, scheduled to launch March 6, 2009.

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lake

March 5, 2009

Turning the Tide to Energy

NASA research into powering robotic underwater vehicles could some day help convert ocean energy into electrical energy on a much larger scale.

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Three-dimensional perspective view of vertical displacement of the land surface south of Bam, Iran during the three and a half years after the December 26, 2003 earthquake

March 4, 2009

Scientists Expose 'Buried' Fault That Caused Deadly 2003 Quake

Scientists have observed, for the first time, the healing of subtle surface scars from an earthquake that occurred on a "buried" fault several miles below the surface.

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artist concept of Odyssey

March 4, 2009

Odyssey Flight Team to Check Status of Backup System

The team operating NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter plans a procedure next week to address a long-known, potential vulnerability of accumulated memory corruption.

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artist concept of NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

March 3, 2009

Orbiter Resumes Normal Science Operations

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has fully recovered from an unexpected computer re-set last week and resumed its scientific investigation of Mars.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

March 3, 2009

NASA Announces Mishap Board Members for OCO Investigation

NASA has selected the members of the board that will investigate the unsuccessful launch of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory on Feb. 24.

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Saturn moonlet

March 3, 2009

Newfound Moon May Be Source of Outer Saturn Ring

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has found within Saturn's G ring an embedded moonlet that appears as a faint, moving pinprick of light.

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Planck coming off plane

March 3, 2009

Planck Arrives at Launch Pad

The Planck spacecraft has arrived at the Centre Spatial Guyanais in Kourou, French Guiana, where it is scheduled to be launched atop an Ariane 5 rocket on April 16.

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Kepler on launch pad

March 3, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Almost There

JPL systems engineer Tracy Drain blogs about the upcoming launch of NASA's Kepler mission, which will look for Earth-like planets.

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smoke stacks

March 3, 2009

Quiz: How Much Do You Know About Carbon Dioxide

Test your 'green' IQ and find out why carbon dioxide is so important to climate stability and our quality of life.

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near-infrared image of Mars taken from the framing camera on NASA's Dawn spacecraft

February 26, 2009

Dawn Finishes Mars Phase

With Mars disappearing in its metaphorical rearview mirror, NASA's Dawn spacecraft's next stop is the asteroid belt and the giant asteroid Vesta.

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mapping Titan's global wind patterns

February 26, 2009

Cassini Maps Global Pattern of Titan's Dunes

Titan's vast dune fields, which may act like weather vanes to determine general wind direction on Saturn's biggest moon, have been mapped by scientists who compiled four years of radar data collected by the Cassini spacecraft.

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Cyclone Nargis

February 26, 2009

NASA Study Finds 'Pre-Existing Condition' Fueled Killer Cyclone

A "pre-existing condition" in the North Indian Ocean stoked the sudden intensification of last year's Tropical Cyclone Nargis just before its devastating landfall in Burma, according to a new NASA/university study.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

February 25, 2009

NASA Names Chairman for Orbiting Carbon Observatory Investigation

NASA's Rick Obenschain, deputy director at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., will lead the investigation board for the unsuccessful launch of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory on Feb. 24.

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NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

February 25, 2009

Orbiter Puts Itself into Precautionary Mode

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter unexpectedly rebooted its computer Monday morning, Feb. 23, and put itself into a limited-activity mode that is an automated safety response.

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Carl Sagan

February 25, 2009

NASA Announces 2009 Astronomy and Astrophysics Fellows

NASA has selected fellows in three areas of astronomy and astrophysics for its Einstein, Hubble, and Sagan Fellowships.

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fire plume statistics

February 25, 2009

The Cutting Edge: Satellite Data Provide New View of Smoke From Wildfires

Scientists have a new tool for understanding how events in one region, such as wildfires, can affect air quality in areas far away.

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layered rock that exhibits fracturing

February 25, 2009

Fractured Lavas Suggest Floods on Mars

Images from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter show a type of rock fracturing that here on Earth is caused by rapid cooling of lava.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

February 24, 2009

NASA's Launch of Carbon-Seeking Satellite Is Unsuccessful

NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory satellite failed to reach orbit after its 1:55 a.m. PST liftoff Tuesday from California's Vandenberg Air Force Base.

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Mobile service tower at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

February 24, 2009

Kepler One Step Closer to Launch

NASA's Kepler spacecraft was successfully mated to its rocket in preparation for a March 5 launch.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

February 24, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Thoughts After Launch

JPL's Randy Pollock reflects on the unsuccessful launch of NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory.

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Mars Science Lab in clean room

February 23, 2009

Readying for Mars: Live 'Clean Room Cam' and Chat

Join us for a rare opportunity to go behind-the-scenes to see engineers and technicians as they work on the Mars Science Laboratory, which is scheduled to launch in 2011.

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Orbiting Carbon Observatory on launch pad

February 23, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Counting Carbon

JPL engineer Randy Pollock explains how NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory will help seek out carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere.

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fires over Australia

February 20, 2009

JPL Imagery Captures Fires in the Land 'Down Under'

Satellite images of Australia's severe wildfires show the global transport of their pollution, extent of the devastation and the fires still burning as of Feb. 17.

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sky chart showing comet Lulin

February 20, 2009

Q and A: A Green Comet

We hear a lot about "going green" these days. The latest to join in the trend is comet Lulin, which is making an appearance in the nighttime sky this month.

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Orbiting Carbon Observatory on launch pad

February 20, 2009

Five Things About the Orbiting Carbon Observatory

Here are some quick facts about the Earth-orbiting satellite, scheduled to launch on Feb. 24, 2009.

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near-infrared image of Mars taken from the framing camera on NASA's Dawn spacecraft

February 20, 2009

Dawn Images the Red Planet

NASA's Dawn spacecraft imaged Mars during a Tues., Feb. 17 flyby. The flyby effectively changed the spacecraft's velocity as it heads toward future encounters with Ceres and Vesta.

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artist concept of Kepler in space

February 19, 2009

NASA's Kepler Mission to Seek Other Earths

NASA's Kepler spacecraft is ready to be moved to the launch pad today and will soon begin a journey to search for worlds that could potentially host life.

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Map of the cumulative tracks of all tropical cyclones during the 1985-2005 time period.

February 19, 2009

For NASA's Hurricane Web Page, It's Always Hurricane Season

Many of JPL's Earth missions contribute data to NASA's Hurricane/Tropical Cyclone Web page, which monitors storms year-round.

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map showing sources and storage of carbon dioxide

February 19, 2009

Orbiting Carbon Observatory Aims To Boost Carbon Management Options

As the concentration of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere continues to rise, so also do efforts to find solutions to this global problem.

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Phoenix workspace

February 19, 2009

Award to Recognize Phoenix Mars Lander Team

The team that developed and operated NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander mission will receive the 2009 John L. "Jack" Swigert Award for Space Exploration from the Space Foundation.

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dwarf galaxies forming

February 18, 2009

New Recipe for Dwarf Galaxies: Start With Leftover Gas

There is more than one way to make a dwarf galaxy, and NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer has found a new recipe.

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artist concept of missions to Jupiter and Saturn systems

February 18, 2009

NASA and ESA Prioritize Outer Planet Missions

At a meeting in Washington last week, National Aeronautics and Space Administration and European Space Agency officials decided to continue pursuing studies of a mission to Jupiter and its four largest moons, and to plan for another potential mission to visit Saturn's largest moon Titan and Enceladus.

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artsit concept of Dawn near Mars

February 17, 2009

Dawn to Rise From Red Planet Today

NASA's Dawn spacecraft will get a boost from Mars gravity today. The spacecraft will streak about 549 kilometers (341 miles) above the planet at 4:28 p.m. PST.

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Herschel arriving at launch site

February 17, 2009

Herschel Arrives at Launch Site

The Herschel observatory has arrived at its launch pad at the Centre Spatial Guyanais in Kourou, French Guiana.

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Engineering data from Spirit's power subsystem indicated that some dust blew off the rover's solar array on the following day

February 12, 2009

Spirit Gets Energy Boost from Cleaner Solar Panels

A small but important uptick in electrical output from the solar panels on Spirit this month indicates a beneficial Martian wind has blown away some of the dust that has accumulated on the panels.

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artsit concept of Dawn near Mars

February 12, 2009

NASA Spacecraft Falling For Mars

The gravity of Mars will change the Dawn spacecraft's path about the sun, helping send the probe toward its 2011 encounter with the asteroid Vesta.

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Annual High-Tech Small Business Conference

February 12, 2009

JPL to Host 21st High-Tech Conference for Small Business

The March 3-4 annual High-Tech Conference for Small Business, held by JPL, can help small-business owners improve their knowledge and skills to compete in the federal/state government and prime contractor marketplace.

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Artist's depiction of the spacecraft fully deployed on the surface of Mars.

February 10, 2009

NASA Receives Shorty Twitter Award

NASA's activities in social networking media will be recognized Wednesday in New York, when the agency receives an award for its presence on the popular Web site Twitter.

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spiral galaxy Messier 101

February 10, 2009

NASA's Great Observatories Celebrate International Year of Astronomy

Galileo first turned his telescope to the heavens in 1609, marking the dawn of modern astronomy.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

February 10, 2009

NASA Mission Meets the Carbon Dioxide Measurement Challenge

The challenge: very precisely measure carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere all over the world, especially near Earth's surface.

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Winners from the 2009 regional Science Bowl

February 9, 2009

Santa Monica High Rules the Day at Science Bowl

In an annual "battle of the brains," Santa Monica High School placed first in the regional Science Bowl held on Saturday, Feb. 7, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.

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Moustafa Chahine

February 6, 2009

NASA-JPL Scientist Elected to National Academy of Engineering

In one of the highest professional distinctions accorded to engineers and scientists, the National Academy of Engineering has elected Moustafa T. Chahine, a senior research scientist at JPL as a member of its organization.

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artist concept of Stardust-Next

February 6, 2009

Stardust Logs A Decade Under The Stars

Saturday, Feb. 7, marks the 10th anniversary of the launch of NASA's well-traveled Stardust spacecraft.

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Jason 1 and OSTM/Jason 2

February 6, 2009

Ocean-Observing Satellites Begin Tandem Tango

Two NASA oceanography satellites have begun a long-distance orbital dance that will double the amount of data on ocean features that was previously available.

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researchers trek through Antarctica's Beacon Valley

February 5, 2009

Antarctic Expedition Prepared Researchers for Mars Project

About half a year before Phoenix began digging into the arctic plain of Mars, six scientists traveled to one of the coldest, driest places on Earth for soil-and-ice studies that would end up aiding analysis of the Mars data.

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JPL's Chip Miller

February 5, 2009

The Mystery of the Missing Carbon: A JPL Live Chat

A NASA satellite set to launch this month will soon be hot on the trail of the elusive greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, the leading human-produced cause of global warming. JPL's Chip Miller will take your questions.

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chart showing trends of carbon dioxide

February 5, 2009

NASA Carbon Mission to Improve Future Climate Change Predictions

The Orbiting Carbon Observatory, launching this month, will provide the initial steps in the journey of measuring carbon dioxide from space.

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Signs of Landscape Modifications at Martian Crater

February 5, 2009

Signs of Landscape Modifications at Martian Crater

A new study of crater images from NASA Mars Odyssey and other orbiters adds to evidence that water has likely played various roles in shaping the Martian landscape.

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Axel rover prototype

February 4, 2009

NASA and Caltech Test Steep-Terrain Rover

Engineers from JPL and students at Caltech have designed and tested a versatile, low-mass robot that can rappel off cliffs and travel nimbly over steep and rocky terrain.

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galaxy cluster Abell

February 3, 2009

JPL Blog: How We See Dark Matter

Astronomer Dan Coe ponders one of the most elusive components of the universe, dark matter.

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Spirit view of Mars

February 2, 2009

Spirit Resumes Driving

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit resumed driving Saturday after engineers gained confidence from diagnostic activities earlier in the week evaluating how well the rover senses its orientation.

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artst concept of Cassini spacecraft

February 2, 2009

Cassini Thruster Swap Planned

The Cassini spacecraft will swap to a backup set of propulsion thrusters in mid-March due to degradation in the performance of the current set of thrusters.

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Annual High-Tech Small Business Conference

January 29, 2009

JPL to Host High-Tech Conference for Small Business

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., will host the 21st Annual High-Tech Conference for Small Business on Tuesday and Wednesday, March 3 and 4, at the Westin Los Angeles Airport hotel.

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This is an artist’s concept of the Orbiting Carbon Observatory.

January 29, 2009

NASA Mission to Help Unravel Key Carbon, Climate Mysteries

NASA's first spacecraft dedicated to studying atmospheric carbon dioxide is in final preparations for a Feb. 23 launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

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map of Titan

January 29, 2009

Cassini Captures Changes in Titan's Lakes

A region on Saturn's moon Titan's southern latitudes appears to have been flooded by a summer cloudburst of hydrocarbon rain, as seen in images from NASA's Cassini spacecraft taken before and after a large storm system was observed.

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artist concept of the Mars Exploration Rover

January 28, 2009

Mars Rover Team Diagnosing Unexpected Behavior

Diagnostic activities performed by Spirit on Thursday, Jan. 29 narrowed the range of factors that may have contributed to its unexpected behavior earlier in the week.

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computer-generated images chart the development of severe weather patterns on the exoplanet

January 28, 2009

Astronomers Observe Planet With Wild Temperature Swings

The "hot-headed" planet, observed by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, is a gas giant that orbits a star 190 light-years from Earth.

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map of Earth

January 23, 2009

The Orbiting Carbon Observatory and the Mystery of the Missing Sinks

NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory will help scientists pinpoint what happens to unaccounted carbon dioxide in Earth's atmosphere.

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Spirit's view of Husband Hill

January 21, 2009

On the JPL Blog: Growing Up With the Mars Rovers

The Mars Exploration Rovers are more than robots, writes robotics engineer Ashley Stroupe. They have become a shared dream.

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artist concept of Mars Science Laboratory

January 16, 2009

Deadline Nears for Student Contest to Name NASA's Next Mars Rover

WASHINGTON -- NASA is issuing a last call to the nation's youth for entries in a contest to name the agency's next Mars rover.

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montage showing an artist concept of the Mars Exploration Rovers along with social-networking sites.

January 15, 2009

Socializing on Mars

Mars Exploration Rovers have new life on the likes of "Second Life," "YouTube," "Unmannedspaceflight.com," and "Facebook."

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dust forming around a dying star

January 15, 2009

Spitzer Finds Dust Around Primitive Star

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has observed dust forming around a dying star in a nearby galaxy, enlivening a debate about the origins of all cosmic dust.

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Spirit's Everest panorama

January 15, 2009

Watch, Listen and Celebrate Five Years on Mars

Catch up with the rovers via several videos and podcasts.

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artist concept of Stardust-NExT

January 14, 2009

Stardust Spacecraft Passes Close to Earth

The NASA/JPL Stardust spacecraft flew within 9,000 kilometers (5,600 miles) of Earth today. The Stardust-NExT mission is scheduled for an encounter with comet Tempel 1 in Feb. 2011.

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Santorini panorama from Opportunity

January 13, 2009

Tune Into Mars Rover Anniversary Program

Videos, talks from mission leaders and a keynote from former CNN correspondent Miles O'Brien will be part of a program carried on NASA TV for the rover five-year anniversary.

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artist concept of Orbiting Carbon Observatory

January 13, 2009

The Human Factor: Understanding the Sources of Rising Carbon Dioxide

Every time we get into our car, turn the key and drive somewhere, we burn gasoline, a fossil fuel derived from crude oil.

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Opportunity and a distant Victoria Crater

January 12, 2009

Public Events Mark Mars Rovers' Five-Year Anniversary

Public events during the next two weeks will share the adventures of the still-active NASA Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity.

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runaway stars

January 7, 2009

Hubble Finds Stars That 'Go Ballistic'

JPLer Raghvendra Sahai and colleagues found several runaway stars, racing through space like bullets.

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January 7, 2009

Latest Astronomy Conference Update: Balloon Mission

News from the 213th meeting of the American Astronomical Society on Long Beach, Calif.

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Kepler arriving in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

January 7, 2009

Planet-Finding Mission Arrives in Florida

NASA's Kepler spacecraft, scheduled to launch in March on a journey to search for other Earths, arrived in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

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artist concept of white dwarf

January 5, 2009

Dead Stars Tell Story of Planet Birth

Observations made with NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope reveal six dead "white dwarf" stars littered with the remains of shredded asteroids.

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Phoenix Mars Lander

January 2, 2009

A Change of Seasons on Mars

This image, taken on December 21, shows the Phoenix Mars Lander during the last waning days of northern hemisphere summer. This is the first image targeted to the lander since it ceased activity.

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