Planetary Exploration

Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series: Chasing New Horizons – Inside the Epic First Mission to Pluto

This Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series event has passed, but a video of the lecture can be found here. Drs. Alan Stern and David Grinspoon will give a free, illustrated, non-technical talk. In July 2015, humanity’s fastest spacecraft, “New Horizons,” flew by Pluto, revealing details of its surprisingly active surface and atmosphere for the first time.  Come hear the mission’s Principal…

Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series: Rubble Piles in the Sky: The Science, Exploration, and Danger of Near-Earth Asteroids

This Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series event has passed, but a video of the lecture can be found here. Dr. Michael Busch, of the SETI Institute, will give a free, illustrated, non-technical talk Near-Earth asteroids are a population of small bodies whose orbits around the Sun cross or come near our planet’s orbit.  They turn out to be unusual physical environments: rubble piles, with…

Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series: When Mars Was Like Earth: Five Years of Exploration with NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover

This Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series event has passed, but a video of the lecture can be found here. Dr. Ashwin Vasavada, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, will give a free, illustrated, non-technical talk. More than five years after its dramatic arrival at Mars, the car-sized Curiosity rover continues to reveal Mars as a once-habitable planet. Early in Mars' history, rivers and…

Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS): 50th Annual Meeting

DPS 50th Annual Meeting The Division for Planetary Sciences is a division of the American Astronomical Society devoted to Solar System research. Program schedule to be announced.

COSPAR 2018: Committee on Space Research

COSPAR's objectives are to promote on an international level scientific research in space, with emphasis on the exchange of results, information and opinions, and to provide a forum, open to all scientists, for the discussion of problems that may affect scientific space research. These objectives are achieved through the organization of Scientific Assemblies, publications and other means. SETI…

Spacefest IX: The Event for Space Enthusiasts

Spacefest is THE event for space enthusiasts of any stripe – Astronomy, Human Space Exploration, Robotic Space Exploration, Commercial Space Development or Space History Enthusiast. For the Professional and Amateur. Pascal Lee, SETI Institute Planetary Scientist: "Humans to Mars: From Vision to Reality" Seth Shostak, SETI Institute Fellow and Senior Scientist: "Light Signals from ET" Other…
Saturn's Rings  credit: NASA

New Film, "In Saturn’s Rings", is a Unique Tour of the Universe

In Saturn’s Rings is a trip through space. Narrated by LeVar Burton, Stephen van Vuuren’s new documentary film uses millions of images of Earth, the Milky Way, and the Moon that were captured by Hubble, Cassini, and other NASA space telescopes to offer a grand tour of the universe. Nathalie Cabrol, SETI Institute Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Carl Sagan Center, along with her…

Roving on Mars: Revving up for Future Exploration of the Red Planet

Orbiters, followed by rovers sent to Mars, have yielded a dramatic increase in knowledge about Mars over the past decade. Today thanks to several years of data collected in situ and remotely we have a better understanding of its geology and habitability potential. Three SETI Institute planetary scientists who have dedicated their career to the study of the red planet will tell us what we have…
pluto

Why is it so cold on Pluto?

It’s cold on Pluto. Very cold. During the New Horizons flyby of Pluto in 2015 we learned that the temperature is colder than previously thought, -203 ºC. Now a new paper in Nature, co-authored by SETI Institute scientist Hiroshi Imanaki and lead author, Xi Zhang, University of Santa Cruz, explains that haze is the cause of Pluto’s cold temperature. The research team found that Pluto’s atmosphere…
flyby

Do You Have the Perfect Nickname for New Horizons’ Next Flyby Target?

Mountain View, CA – Today NASA announced a new naming campaign for the next flyby target of the New Horizons spacecraft. At the moment, the target is officially known as “(486958) 2014 MU69”, or “MU69” for short. Hosted by the SETI Institute, Frontier Worlds (frontierworlds.seti.org) is a new website that invites the public to nominate possible nicknames, vote, and track the progress of the…