Asteroid Bennu: successful touchdown – but sample return mission has only just begun

Bennu will tell us about our own origins as much as about the origin of asteroid Bennu.

Monica Grady, Professor of Planetary and Space Sciences, The Open University • conversation
Oct. 21, 2020 ~7 min

solar-system asteroid space-exploration near-earth-asteroids

NASA's OSIRIS-REx will land on an asteroid to bring home rocks and dust – if it can avoid Mt. Doom

OSIRIS-REx will touch down on asteroid Bennu, collect a sample of the dust and begin its journey back to Earth, where scientists will study it, hoping to learn secrets of the solar system's origin.

Elizabeth Cantwell, Professor of Practice for Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering and Senior Vice President for Research & Innovation, University of Arizona • conversation
Oct. 19, 2020 ~8 min

 space  astronomy  solar-system  nasa  asteroid  astrobiology  innovation-and-invention  bennu  near-earth-asteroids  sample-return-mission

The four most promising worlds for alien life in the solar system

The clouds of Venus may harbour alien life. But where else?

Gareth Dorrian, Post Doctoral Research Fellow in Space Science, University of Birmingham • conversation
Sept. 18, 2020 ~7 min

solar-system life mars earth alien-life jupiter saturn venus titan cassini enceladus europa

Hints of life discovered on Venus

A UK-led team of astronomers has discovered a rare molecule – phosphine – in the clouds of Venus, pointing to the possibility of extra-terrestrial ‘aerial’

Cambridge University News • cambridge
Sept. 14, 2020 ~7 min

physics space astronomy solar-system planets

Life inside Pluto? Hot birth may have created internal ocean on dwarf planet

Pluto began hot inside, study of its surface fractures suggests

David Rothery, Professor of Planetary Geosciences, The Open University • conversation
June 22, 2020 ~8 min

solar-system dwarf-planets alien-life pluto extraterrestrial-life

When baby planets melt

MIT scientists identify first magmas generated in solar system’s building blocks, unexpectedly answering questions about meteorites and formation of rocky planets.

Laura Carter | School of Science • mit
May 7, 2020 ~8 min

space solar-system mars mercury research school-of-science planetary-science eaps earth-and-atmospheric-sciences astronomy-and-planetary-science venus

Is this what our solar system’s ‘force field’ looks like?

There's a protective bubble around our solar system called the heliosphere. New research may bridge the divide between two major theories.

Kate Becker-Boston University • futurity
March 20, 2020 ~9 min

physics space stars science-and-technology solar-systems heliosphere solar-wind

How the moon formed – new research

The Earth and the Moon were long thought to be virtually identical in composition. Now we know they are not.

Christian Schroeder, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science and Planetary Exploration, University of Stirling • conversation
March 9, 2020 ~5 min

 solar-system  isotopes  moon  space-exploration  earth

Uranus pics show off the planet’s mostly invisible rings

"I was just trying to image the planet as best I could and I saw the rings. It was amazing."

Robert Sanders-UC Berkeley • futurity
June 30, 2019 ~6 min

space planets science-and-technology solar-systems