When Spirit Spotted a Swarm of Devils

Mars may be pretty low on traffic these days but, on this day back in 2005, NASA’s Spirit rover (the twin to Opportunity) seemed to find itself at a busy intersection as several blustery dust devils zipped past, one after the other!

Proposed Trident Mission Could Explore Neptune’s Moon Triton in 2038

(News from NASA) Voyager 2 is the only spacecraft ever to have flown past Neptune, and it left a lot of unanswered questions. The views were as stunning as they were puzzling, revealing massive, dark plumes of icy material spraying out from Triton‘s surface. But how? Images showed that the icy landscape was young and…

ESA’s Solar Orbiter Will Fly Through the Tail(s) of Comet ATLAS

(News from ESA) ESA’s Solar Orbiter will cross through the tails of Comet ATLAS during the next few days. Although the recently launched spacecraft was not due to be taking science data at this time, mission experts have worked to ensure that the four most relevant instruments will be switched on during the unique encounter.

Haunting Images from NASA of a Space Suit Drifting in Orbit

You might want to file this under “nightmare fuel.”  Yes this is a thing that actually happened on the International Space Station in 2006. But if you’re not already familiar with what’s going on here, it’s probably not what you think…

Saturn Seen Through Titan’s Hazy Atmosphere

Here’s a view of the upper limb of Saturn seen through the atmosphere of its largest moon Titan. It’s a color-composite of images captured by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft on March 31, 2005 as it passed just 7,500 kilometers (4,660 miles) from Titan. Saturn was 1.2 million kilometers (745,000 miles) away from Cassini at the time.

Scientists Use Starlight to Probe Pluto’s Blue Sky

From a May 12, 2020 NASA article: When the New Horizons spacecraft passed by Pluto in 2015, one of the many fascinating features its images revealed was that this small, frigid world in the distant solar system has a hazy atmosphere. Now, new data helps explain how Pluto’s haze is formed from the faint light…

Two New Moons Found Around Jupiter

Jupiter has long been known to have the most moons of all the planets in the Solar System—just barely surpassing Saturn’s official 62, although that’s not taking into consideration the larger chunks of icy material within Saturn’s rings—and its leading margin has just increased even further with the discovery of two more moons, bringing Jupiter’s…

What Is Space?

This is a blog post I wrote in March of 2008—a year before there was even Lights in the Dark! I’m sharing it again because it’s fun…I hope you think so too. We’ve all seen the grade-school models of the solar system. Maybe you made one in science class. Out of painted styrofoam balls or…