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Latest Mars exploration Stories

Sandstone layers with varying resistance to erosion
2014-03-25 06:30:10

Guy Webster, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Variations in the stuff that cements grains together in sandstone have shaped the landscape surrounding NASA's Curiosity Mars rover and could be a study topic at the mission's next science waypoint. On a journey with many months yet to go toward prime destinations on the lower slope of Mount Sharp, Curiosity is approaching a site called "the Kimberley." Scientists on the team picked this location last year as a likely place to pause for...

MAVEN Electra Relay Radio
2014-03-03 04:21:23

NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory The team operating NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission successfully completed, on Feb. 19, 2014, the initial post-launch power-on and checkout of the spacecraft's Electra Ultra High Frequency Transceiver. This wraps up the initial checkouts of all payloads on the MAVEN spacecraft, with everything performing as expected. MAVEN will examine the upper atmosphere of Mars to provide understanding about processes that led to the loss of...

mars striations
2014-02-27 12:04:34

NASA NASA's Curiosity Mars rover has reached an area where orbital images had piqued researchers' interest in patches of ground with striations all oriented in a similar direction. A close-up look at some of the striations from the rover's Navigation Camera gains extra drama by including Mount Sharp in the background. The lower slopes of that layered mountain are the mission's long-term science destination. The foreground rocks are in an outcrop called "Junda," which the rover passed...

Mars One Trip Prohibited To Muslims
2014-02-22 04:59:19

[ Watch the Video: Who Can't Take The MarsOne Trip? ] redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Participation in Mars One, the proposed hybrid space adventure and reality television program that intends to send at least four people to live on the red planet, has been prohibited in a religious proclamation issued earlier this week by the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowment (GAIAE) in the United Arab Emirates. According to a report published Wednesday in...

curiosity looks back
2014-02-20 11:08:34

Guy Webster, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Terrain that NASA's Curiosity Mars rover is now crossing is as smooth as team members had anticipated based on earlier images from orbit. On Tuesday, Feb. 18, the rover covered 329 feet (100.3 meters), the mission's first long trek that used reverse driving and its farthest one-day advance of any kind in more than three months. The reverse drive validated feasibility of a technique developed with testing on Earth to lessen damage to...

2014-02-14 16:21:32

WASHINGTON, Feb. 14, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Researchers have determined the now-infamous Martian rock resembling a jelly doughnut, dubbed Pinnacle Island, is a piece of a larger rock broken and moved by the wheel of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity in early January. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) Only about 1.5 inches wide (4 centimeters), the white-rimmed, red-centered rock caused a stir last month when it appeared in an image the...

China's Jade Rabbit Lunar Rover Reawakens After Short Hibernation
2014-02-14 14:51:58

[ Watch the Video: Jade Rabbit Lunar Rover Wakes Up ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online After a dramatic, albeit premature eulogy, China’s lunar rover has sprung back to life like a zombie from The Walking Dead. In January, technical difficulties forced the rover, dubbed Jade Rabbit, into a hibernation period from which many said it may never emerge. "The Jade Rabbit went into sleep under an abnormal status," explained China’s space program spokesperson Pei...

curiosity tracks across dune
2014-02-12 07:45:08

Guy Webster, Jet Propulsion Laboratory NASA's Curiosity Mars rover is continuing its traverse toward enticing science destinations after climbing over a dune spanning a gap in a ridge. The rover covered 135 feet (41.1 meters) on Feb. 9, in its first drive since the 23-foot (7-meter) crossing of the dune on Feb. 6. That put Curiosity's total odometry since its August 2012 landing at 3.09 miles (4.97 kilometers). An animated sequence of images from the low-slung Hazard-Avoidance Camera...

2014-02-10 20:20:11

WASHINGTON, Feb. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and Jean-Yves Le Gall, president of the National Center of Space Studies of France (CNES), signed an implementing agreement Monday for cooperation on a future NASA Mars lander called the Interior Exploration Using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy, and Heat Transport (InSight) mission. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) "This new agreement strengthens the partnership...

Mars Rover Curiosity Captures Image Of 'Evening Star' Earth
2014-02-07 08:54:15

Guy Webster, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. New images from NASA's Curiosity Mars rover show Earth shining brighter than any star in the Martian night sky. The rover's view of its original home planet even includes our moon, just below Earth. The images, taken about 80 minutes after sunset during the rover's 529th Martian day (Jan. 31, 2014) are available at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA17936 for a broad scene of the evening sky, and at...


Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'