The Pluto-shaped void in our hearts has yet to be filled by Planet 9, copious amounts of Ben & Jerry’s, or anything. Ever since the summer of 2015, when NASA’s New Horizons performed a six-month-long reconnaissance flyby study of Pluto and its moons, fans of the dwarf planet have wondered if or when we’d ever go back.…
If you know your mythology, you’re already familiar with Pluto’s spooktacular namesake; the lovable dwarf planet is named after the Roman god of the underworld, also known as Hades in Greek mythology. He was chiefly in charge of judging the dead, which sounds like one hell of a great gig.
After re-examining data acquired by the Voyager 2 spacecraft, astronomers have detected wavy patterns in two of Uranus’s dark system of rings—patterns that may be indicative of two undiscovered moons.
Phobos and Deimos, Mars’ lumpy, runty moons, were once pegged as captured asteroids. But the truth is shaping up to be far more interesting. These ruddy satellites could be the lone survivors of a giant impact that eviscerated half of Mars’ surface billions of years ago.
Fact: There are two moons hiding in this picture. But can you spot them? Are you sure?
This week, the Cassini spacecraft made its fifth and final flyby of Dione, Saturn’s fourth-largest moon. This image, in which Saturn and its rings can be seen looming behind the moon, was captured in the leadup to the mission’s last close approach, on August 17, 2015.
A new theory proposes that Saturn’s outermost ring formed in the wake of an ancient collision between two icy satellites, and that similar collisions may account for comparable ringed structures around other planets.
Recently acquired images of Tethys, one of the ice moons of Saturn, have given scientists their best view yet of several “unusual, arc-shaped reddish streaks” that sweep across the satellite’s surface.
Countries are scrambling to get to Mars in a good ol’ fashioned space race. But focus might be shifting to the red planet’s two moons. According to reports, Japan announced plans yesterday to bring its asteroid-probing technology to the tiny Martian satellites.
This week on Meanwhile in the Future, we ask what would happen if Earth had a second moon. How exactly that happens I won’t reveal — you’ll have to listen! But once it does, there are some really interesting things that we might notice on Earth, from tides and the night sky, to the potential destruction of Earth.
Aside from having the coolest name for a moon ever, Hyperion is known for its potato-like shape and a surface that looks — and even acts — like a sponge. But as the Cassini spacecraft discovered back in 2005, this Saturnian moon also packs an unexpected punch.
What happens when a planetary scientist has a love for order? He creates code that sorts everything from our solar system’s moons to exoplanets into graceful spirals where every object is slightly smaller than the one before. Astronomical knolling is my new favourite way to contemplate the vast scale of space.
Submoons — satellites of satellites — are theoretically possible. However, they'd suffer the same eventual fate of the things we launch into orbit of our planet: eventual decay of orbit and crash into the planet below. That's a fascinating location to set a story on.
There's a strange bulge on the Solar System's largest moon, one that measures 375 miles wide and nearly two miles tall. Scientists aren't entirely sure why it's there or what caused it, but it may have something to do with the Jovian moon's subsurface ocean.
We all know and love the moon. We're so assured that we only have one that we don't even give it a specific name. It's just The Moon. But the moon is not the Earth's only natural satellite. Here's what you need to know about 3753 Cruithne and what its weird orbit reveals about the solar system.
Eighty-five years ago today, Clyde Tombaugh found a small dot of light shifting position while hunting for the trans-Neptune planet predicted by Percival Lowell. Now, the New Horizons probe en route to Pluto has photographed its tiny moons, Nix and Hydra.
At a recent advanced concepts symposium, NASA scientists unveiled a conceptual plan to explore the frigid methane and ethane seas on Saturn's largest moon, Titan, using a robotic submarine.
NASA's astronomy picture of the day is nothing especial today. At least for more people. For me it is special because I like to look at the four moons that tantalize Earth scientists with the possibility of life—four moons that we should explore soon, shown here to scale. So beautiful, they never get old.
Scientists working on NASA's Cassini mission have discovered no less than 101 distinct geysers on Saturn's small icy moon Enceladus. Just as exciting is the possibility that liquid water may be reaching the surface — making Enceladus a major target for future exploration.
Another day, another fake image getting passed around as real. Today we have everything from posing puppies to sketchy satellites to underwater trains that are just too good to be true. Always remember the first rule of viral image safety: be aware before you share.