Space Probes

Space Probes News -- ScienceDaily Space Probes. Read the latest in space exploration using unmanned spacecraft. See images from Space Probe Cassini and Space Probe Galileo. Pictures of Saturn, Jupiter, Mars and more.

  • Unexpected atmospheric vortex behavior on Saturn's moon Titan
    on November 21, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    Recently reported unexpected behavior on Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, is due to its unique atmospheric chemistry. Titan is the largest moon of Saturn, is bigger than the planet Mercury, and is the only moon in our solar system to have a substantial atmosphere. […]

  • Space dust may transport life between worlds, research suggests
    on November 20, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Life on Earth might have originated from tiny organisms brought to our planet in streams of fast-moving space dust, according to a new study. […]

  • Taking a spin on plasma space tornadoes with NASA observations
    on November 17, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    Tornado-like swirls of space plasma create tumultuous boundaries in the near-Earth environment, letting dangerous high-energy particles slip into near Earth space, new NASA mission results show. […]

  • Pluto's hydrocarbon haze keeps dwarf planet colder than expected
    on November 15, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    The gas composition of a planet's atmosphere generally determines how much heat gets trapped in the atmosphere. For the dwarf planet Pluto, however, the predicted temperature based on the composition of its atmosphere was much higher than actual measurements taken by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft in 2015. A new study proposes a novel cooling mechanism controlled by haze particles to account for Pluto's frigid atmosphere. […]

  • Space missions locate whistling space electrons' origins
    on November 15, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    Plasma waves in space are likely responsible for accelerating high-energy particles into Earth's atmosphere, new research shows. […]

  • Dawn spacecraft explores dwarf planet Ceres' interior evolution
    on November 9, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    Surface features on Ceres -- the largest world between Mars and Jupiter -- and its interior evolution have a closer relationship than one might think. A recent study analyzed Ceres' surface features to reveal clues about the dwarf planet's interior evolution. […]

  • Next Mars rover will have 23 'eyes'
    on November 3, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    NASA's Mars 2020 mission will have more "eyes" than any rover before it: a grand total of 23, to create sweeping panoramas, reveal obstacles, study the atmosphere, and assist science instruments. They will provide dramatic views during the rover's descent to the Red Planet. […]

  • Return of the comet: 96P spotted by ESA, NASA satellites
    on November 3, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    Sun-gazing missions SOHO and STEREO watched the return of comet 96P/Machholz when it entered their fields of view between Oct. 25-30. It is extremely rare for comets to be seen simultaneously from two different locations in space, and these are the most comprehensive parallel observations ever taken of this comet. […]

  • Study unveils changes in the brain during extended missions in space
    on November 1, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    A neuroradiologist conducted a study titled 'Effects of Spaceflight on Astronaut Brain Structure as Indicated on MRI,' the results of which will be featured in the Nov. 2 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. […]

  • NASA investigates invisible magnetic bubbles in outer solar system
    on November 1, 2017 at 7:12 pm

    Forty years ago, the twin Voyagers spacecraft were launched to explore the frontiers of our solar system, and have since made countless discoveries, including finding magnetic bubbles around two of the outer planets. […]

  • Jupiter's X-ray auroras pulse independently
    on October 30, 2017 at 4:34 pm

    Jupiter's intense northern and southern lights pulse independently of each other according to new research. […]

  • A light in the dark: NASA sounding rocket probes the dark regions of space
    on October 27, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    Spread out over unfathomable distances, this cold, diffuse gas between galaxies -- called the intergalactic medium, or IGM for short -- hardly emits any light, making it difficult to study. […]

  • Comet mission reveals 'missing link' in our understanding of planet formation
    on October 25, 2017 at 6:04 pm

    The missing link in our understanding of planet formation has been revealed by the first ever spacecraft to orbit and land on a comet, say scientists. […]

  • Fireworks in space
    on October 25, 2017 at 3:28 am

    Some of the most exciting things that we've seen from looking at gene expression in space is that we really see an explosion, like fireworks taking off, as soon as the human body gets into space. […]

  • NASA's MAVEN mission finds Mars has a twisted magnetic tail
    on October 19, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Mars has an invisible magnetic 'tail' that is twisted by interaction with the solar wind, according to new research using data from NASA's MAVEN spacecraft. […]

  • Noxious ice cloud on Saturn's moon Titan
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    Researchers with NASA's Cassini mission found evidence of a toxic hybrid ice in a wispy cloud high above the south pole of Saturn's largest moon, Titan. […]

  • Solar eruptions could electrify Martian moons
    on October 18, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    Powerful solar eruptions could electrically charge areas of the Martian moon Phobos to hundreds of volts, presenting a complex electrical environment that could possibly affect sensitive electronics carried by future robotic explorers, according to a new NASA study. The study also considered electrical charges that could develop as astronauts transit the surface on potential human missions to Phobos. […]

  • A mission to Mars could make its own oxygen thanks to plasma technology
    on October 18, 2017 at 3:33 pm

    Plasma technology could hold the key to creating a sustainable oxygen supply on Mars, a new study has found. It suggests that Mars, with its 96 per cent carbon dioxide atmosphere, has nearly ideal conditions for creating oxygen from CO2 through a process known as decomposition. […]

  • Potential human habitat located on the moon
    on October 18, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    A new study confirms the existence of a large open lava tube in the Marius Hills region of the moon, which could be used to protect astronauts from hazardous conditions on the surface. […]

  • Space greens beat the blues
    on October 18, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    Where people will go in the cosmos, plants will go, say researchers. Plants may also play a key role in maintaining the psychological well-being of space crews. The next frontier of space plant experimentation is to examine the psychological impact of plant life on astronauts. […]

  • To keep Saturn's A ring contained, its moons stand united
    on October 17, 2017 at 4:43 pm

    For three decades, astronomers thought that only Saturn's moon Janus confined the planet's A ring -- the largest and farthest of the visible rings. But after poring over NASA's Cassini mission data, astronomers now conclude that the teamwork of seven moons keeps this ring corralled. […]

  • Space radiation won't stop NASA's human exploration
    on October 13, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    While it's true that space radiation is one of the biggest challenges for a human journey to Mars, it's also true that NASA is developing technologies and countermeasures to ensure a safe and successful journey to the red planet. […]

  • Intense storms batter Saturn’s largest moon, scientists report
    on October 12, 2017 at 9:25 pm

    Titan, the largest of Saturn's more than 60 moons, has surprisingly intense rainstorms, according to research by a team of UCLA planetary scientists and geologists. Although the storms are relatively rare -- they occur less than once per Titan year, which is 29 and a half Earth years -- they occur much more frequently than the scientists expected. […]

  • Reconstructing Cassini's plunge into Saturn
    on October 12, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    As NASA's Cassini spacecraft made its fateful dive into the upper atmosphere of Saturn on Sept. 15, the spacecraft was live-streaming data from eight of its science instruments, along with readings from a variety of engineering systems. While analysis of science data from the final plunge will take some time, Cassini engineers already have a pretty clear understanding of how the spacecraft itself behaved as it went in. […]

  • The moon once had an atmosphere
    on October 9, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    A new study shows that an atmosphere was produced around the ancient Moon, 3 to 4 billion years ago, when intense volcanic eruptions spewed gases above the surface faster than they could escape to space. […]

  • Mars study yields clues to possible cradle of life
    on October 6, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    The discovery of evidence for ancient sea-floor hydrothermal deposits on Mars identifies an area on the planet that may offer clues about the origin of life on Earth. The research offers evidence that these deposits were formed by heated water from a volcanically active part of the planet's crust entering the bottom of a large sea long ago. […]

  • Tracking debris in the Earth‘s orbit with centimeter precision using efficient laser technology
    on October 5, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    Uncontrollable flying objects in orbit are a massive risk for modern space travel, and, due to our dependence on satellites today, it is also a risk to global economy. Scientists have now developed a fiber laser that reliably determines the position and direction of the space debris' movement to mitigate these risks. […]

  • Mars' moon Phobos examined in a different light
    on October 5, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    NASA's longest-lived mission to Mars has gained its first look at the Martian moon Phobos, pursuing a deeper understanding by examining it in infrared wavelengths. […]

  • Monitoring microbes to keep Marsonauts healthy
    on October 4, 2017 at 12:29 am

    To guarantee a safe environment for astronauts on long-duration space missions such as a journey to Mars, it is important to monitor how microorganisms such as bacteria adapt to the confined conditions onboard spacecraft, according to a study. […]

  • Meteorite tells us that Mars had a dense atmosphere 4 billion years ago
    on October 2, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Exploration missions have suggested that Mars once had a warm climate, which sustained oceans on its surface. To keep Mars warm requires a dense atmosphere with a sufficient greenhouse effect, while the present-day Mars has a thin atmosphere whose surface pressure is only 0.006 bar, resulting in the cold climate it has today. It has been a big mystery as to when and how Mars lost its dense atmosphere. […]