Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist
Emily Lakdawalla is a passionate advocate for the exploration of all of the worlds of our solar system. Through blogs, photos, videos, podcasts, print articles, Twitter, and any other medium she can put her hand to, Emily shares the adventure of space exploration with the world.
Emily holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in geology from Amherst College and a Master of Science degree in planetary geology from Brown University. She came to The Planetary Society in 2001 to oversee a portion of the Society's Red Rover Goes to Mars project, an education and public outreach program on the Mars Exploration Rover mission funded by LEGO. She has been writing and editing the Planetary Society Blog since 2005, reporting on space news, explaining planetary science, and sharing beautiful space photos. She appears weekly on the Society's Planetary Radio podcast, answering listener questions or rounding up the latest space news from the blog.
Emily has been an Administrator of the forum UnmannedSpaceflight.com since 2005, supporting a worldwide community of amateur space image processors. She is also a contributing editor to Sky & Telescope magazine.
She is now writing her first book, tentatively titled Curiosity Rover: Design, Planning, and Field Geology on Mars, due out from Springer-Praxis in 2017. The book will explain the development, design, mission, and science of Curiosity with the same level of technical detail that she delivers in the Planetary Society Blog.
Latest Blog Posts
Posted 2016/11/23 11:28 CST | 11 comments
ESA issued an update on the Schiaparelli landing investigation today, identifying a problem reading from an inertial measurement unit as the proximate cause of the crash. Meanwhile, ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter is operating its science instruments for the first time this week, and HiRISE has released calibrated versions of the Schiaparelli crash site images.
Posted 2016/11/22 10:23 CST | 3 comments
Emily's eighth annual kids' space book recommendation post includes lots of new books for kids of all ages, 0 to 18.
Posted 2016/11/18 05:28 CST | 0 comment
As she did before for Curiosity, Emily Lakdawalla has searched through the HiRISE image archive for photos of the Opportunity landing site and sorted them all out so that you don't have to.
Posted 2016/11/03 09:44 CDT | 4 comments
Juno may be staying in its 53.5-day orbit for quite a while. Here's a list of the future dates of the next 20 close approaches to Jupiter if the mission stays in that orbit, as well as the latest, near-final version of JunoCam's "Marble Movie."
Posted 2016/11/01 03:35 CDT | 2 comments
Cassini is going to make a major change to its orbit, getting much close to Saturn, setting up 20 "F-ring" orbits. ExoMars will get two science orbits before beginning aerobraking. Long March 5 will have its first launch, while many Earth-observing missions, including Himawari-9 and GOES-R, will go up. But Juno science is on hold.
Posted 2016/10/27 11:43 CDT | 1 comment
Following up the detection of the Schiaparelli crash site by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter CTX, the higher-resolution HiRISE camera has now definitively identified the locations of lander impact site, parachute with backshell, and heat shield impact site on the Martian surface.
Posted 2016/10/25 07:17 CDT | 4 comments
Last week's Division for Planetary Sciences/European Planetary Science Congress meeting was chock-full of science from New Horizons at Pluto.
Latest Processed Space Images
Posted 2016/11/23 | 0 comments
The parachute and backshell as seen on November 1, 2016, about two weeks after the crash. The parachute is bright white and slightly folded; the conical shape of the backshell is visible. Image scale is 27.8 cm/pixel; the whole image is 234 meters square. Inset at lower left shows the same image enlarged by a factor of 5, preserving original HiRISE pixels.
Posted 2016/11/23 | 0 comments
The landing site as seen on November 1, 2016, about two weeks after the crash. Color and grayscale data have been combined to emphasize the shape of the impact crater, dark ejecta from the impact/explosion, and bright fragments of the lander. Image scale is 27.8 cm/pixel; the whole image is 234 meters square.
Posted 2016/11/18 | 0 comments
HiRISE images contain a central, skinny color swath about 1 kilometer wide. Since Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter arrived at Mars, it has fairly thoroughly covered the Opportunity field area with color images, with only a few gaps. The area around Victoria crater and the western rim of Endeavour crater were repeatedly imaged.