aug 292013
Titan has a Thick, Rigid and Weathered Ice Shell

  An analysis of gravity and topography data from Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, has revealed unexpected features of the moon’s outer ice shell. The best explanation for the findings, the authors said, is that Titan’s ice shell is rigid and that relatively small topographic features on the surface are associated with large roots extending into [continue reading]

mrt 072013
Water from Europa's Ocean Sometimes Comes to the Surface

  With data collected from the mighty W. M. Keck Observatory, California Institute of Technology (Caltech) astronomer Mike Brown — known as the Pluto killer for discovering a Kuiper-belt object that led to the demotion of Pluto from planetary status — and Kevin Hand from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have found the strongest evidence [continue reading]

okt 122012
Bouncing on Saturn's Moon Titan

  ESA’s Huygens probe bounced, slid and wobbled its way to rest in the 10 seconds after touching down on Saturn’s moon, Titan, in January 2005, a new analysis reveals. The findings provide novel insight into the nature of the moon’s surface. Artist’s impression of the Huygens probe on the surface of Titan. After a [continue reading]

sep 182012
Characterizing the Surface Composition of Mercury

NASA’s MESSENGER (MErcury Surface, Space Environment, GEochemistry, and Ranging) spacecraft, which has been orbiting Mercury since March 2011, has been revealing new information about the surface chemistry and geologic history of the innermost planet in the Solar System. Mercury, as taken from the spacecraft MESSENGER. The spacecraft captured nearly 100,000 images as it orbited the planet. [continue reading]

sep 152012
Mystery Spheres on Mars (With Video)

  NASA’s long-lived rover Opportunity has returned an image of the Martian surface that is puzzling researchers. Spherical objects concentrated at an outcrop called Kirkwood on the western rim of Endeavour Crater differ in several ways from iron-rich spherules nicknamed “blueberries” the rover found at its landing site in early 2004. Using its Microscopic Imager, Opportunity [continue reading]

jul 292012
Researchers Exploring Martian 'Oddities'

  Investigating extremely detailed images of Mars produced by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera – the largest-ever carried on a deep space mission – researchers from Western have discovered further evidence linking subsurface volatiles, such as water or ice, to previously recognized (but thought to be rare) pits, which commonly arise on [continue reading]