NASA’s Curiosity rover has detected both methane in Mars’s atmosphere and carbon-bearing organic compounds in its rocks. But it’s unclear where these molecules come from — or whether there’s any biological connection.
NASA’s MAVEN mission has discovered a new population of particles in Mars’s upper atmosphere. It’s also found a plume of particles escaping from the planet’s poles, confirming atmospheric loss is happening today.
An early outcome from Rosetta's scrutiny of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is that the isotopes in its water have distinctly different ratios than those on Earth.
NASA's Dawn spacecraft spent 14 months photographing Vesta from close range. Now geologists have completed a global map of the asteroid's surface geology.
Right on cue, New Horizons spacecraft has awakened from its final electronic hibernation. Seven months from now, it will make the first-ever visit to Pluto.
On December 5th, NASA successfully launched the first test flight of its Orion capsule. Scheduled to carry astronauts beyond low-Earth orbit in the 2020s, the spacecraft is NASA’s first deep-space people transporter since the Apollo days.
Japan's second asteroid-sample mission launched successfully on December 3rd after weather delays. If successful it will reach asteroid 1999 JU3 in 2018, explore for 18 months, and then return to Earth with souvenirs.
Despite rescue efforts, no one has heard from one of two NASA spacecraft on the far side of the Sun since October 1st.
With its battery power failing, Philae became the "little lander than could" and managed to return results from all 10 of its science instruments before slipping into hibernation.
After free-falling toward Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko for seven hours, ESA's Philae lander bounced on the surface twice before finally coming to rest.
The Rosetta spacecraft reached its objective, Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, in August. Since then, one instrument has been "smelling" the mix of gases escaping from the comet's nucleus.
A Chang'e spacecraft swung around the Moon and its capsule landed safely on Earth — a dress rehearsal for a future mission to bring back lunar samples.
Mars-orbiting spacecraft escaped unscathed by Comet Siding Spring's close approach to the Red Planet — and unique scientific observations are now streaming back to Earth.
It's a historic day for India's maturing space program, as its first-ever interplanetary explorer successfully slipped into orbit around the Red Planet.
On September 21st, after a 33-minute-long rocket firing, NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft slipped into orbit around the Red Planet.
European space officials have decided to drop their Philae lander on November 11th onto the small end of the already-active Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. Success is hardly assured.
Now two years into its exploration of Mars, NASA's big rover has reached the base of the huge mound that scientists hope will reveal the Red Planet's history.
On August 25, 1989, a NASA spacecraft made its fourth and final planetary encounter. What it revealed 25 years ago about the Neptunian system is still amazing and still profound.
Mission planners have devised an unusual strategy for protecting orbiting spacecraft when Comet Siding Spring passes the Red Planet in October 2014.
On August 6th, the ESA's Rosetta spacecraft finally completed its decade-long voyage to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.
Six years from now, there will be a new NASA robot heading to the Red Planet: the Mars 2020 rover. On July 31st mission planners unveiled the rover’s seven scientific instruments, which will pave the way for human exploration of Mars.
The Rosetta spacecraft is closing in on Comet 67P/C-G, providing astronomers with an ever more detailed view of its structure. Judging by the latest photos, it actually has two components and is shaped like… a rubber ducky?
New Horizons will reach Pluto a year from today, and the scientific community is abuzz with speculation about what the space probe might see when it gets there. Meanwhile, the New Horizons team scours the skies for a Kuiper Belt Object that New Horizons can visit after its Pluto flyby.
How did the the innermost planet get its huge iron core? New computer modeling suggests that Mercury is a lucky survivor of chaotic primordial smashups.
Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko only woke briefly before starting another nap, expected on-again-off-again behavior that bodes well for the comet-chasing spacecraft's arrival in August 2014.