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Snapshots from Space

by Emily Lakdawalla

Follow the thrilling adventures of planetary missions, past and present, and see the stunningly beautiful photos that they return from space!

Great whirling Jupiter

Emily Lakdawalla • November 10, 2016 • 1

Damian Peach's marvelous Jupiter photography, endlessly rotating in GIF form.

Juno update: 53.5-day orbits for the foreseeable future, more Marble Movie

Emily Lakdawalla • November 03, 2016 • 4

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."

What's up in the solar system, November 2016 edition: Cassini takes a leap, ExoMars starts science, Long March 5 launch

Emily Lakdawalla • November 01, 2016 • 2

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.

Schiaparelli crash site imaged by HiRISE

Emily Lakdawalla • October 27, 2016 • 1

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.

DPS/EPSC update on New Horizons at the Pluto system and beyond

Emily Lakdawalla • October 25, 2016 • 4

Last week's Division for Planetary Sciences/European Planetary Science Congress meeting was chock-full of science from New Horizons at Pluto.

Likely Schiaparelli crash site imaged by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

Emily Lakdawalla • October 21, 2016 • 8

Just a day after the arrival of ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter and its lander Schiaparelli, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has taken a photo of the landing site with its Context Camera, and things do not look good.

Brief update: Opportunity's attempt to image Schiaparelli unsuccessful

Emily Lakdawalla • October 19, 2016 • 6

Today, the Opportunity rover attempted a difficult, never-before-possible feat: to shoot a photo of an arriving Mars lander from the Martian surface. Unfortunately, that attempt seems not to have succeeded. Opportunity has now returned the images from the observation attempt, but Schiaparelli is not visible.

DPS/EPSC update: 2007 OR10 has a moon!

Emily Lakdawalla • October 19, 2016 • 5

The third-largest object known beyond Neptune, 2007 OR10, has a moon. The discovery was reported in a poster by Gábor Marton, Csaba Kiss, and Thomas Mueller at the joint meeting of the European Planetary Science Congress and the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society (DPS/EPSC) on Monday.

Juno to delay planned burn

Emily Lakdawalla • October 16, 2016 • 5

The Juno mission posted a status report late Friday afternoon, indicating that they will not perform the originally planned period reduction maneuver during their next perijove (closest approach to Jupiter) on October 19. The delay changes the start date of the science mission and also all the future dates of Juno's perijoves.

ExoMars update: Timeline for separation and orbit insertion

Emily Lakdawalla • October 14, 2016 • 3

Schiaparelli is GO for landing, and ExoMars TGO is GO for orbit insertion! When to expect ExoMars events: Schiaparelli separation, final trajectory maneuvers, landing events, orbit insertion, and press briefings.

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Emily Lakdwalla
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