1999 JU3: It doesn't sound like a very noteworthy name. It's just one of more than 5,000 Apollo-class asteroids. But 1999 JU3 could become a household name if Japan succeeds in mining it—a mission that JAXA has struggled with for decades, often disastrously. And on Sunday, it revealed the probe that could redeem it.
NASA is currently accepting ideas for a mission to Europa — the moon voted most likely to harbour alien life. But thanks to recent budget cuts, it can only consider the most affordable solutions. The fine minds at Draper Labs may have just come up with the answer.
It looks like it's finally going to happen, an actual mission to Jupiter's icy moon Europa — one of the the solar system's best candidates for hosting alien life.
SETI now has the technology to go snooping for extraterrestrials in our own backyard. No, not as close as little green men cutting up crop circles. Rather, we should be able to detect an alien device positioned somewhere between the sun to 30 times farther out than Pluto.
Only a few science fiction fans and futurists had heard of Von Neumann probes before that day in November when the pods smashed down. Some long-dead alien civilization had sent them out before they burped their last methane breaths. The probes' single goal was to spread life to the galaxy, which sounds great on…
The worst part of going to the doctor's is being poked and prodded with any number of terrifying probes and needles, but you probably haven't seen many of the really scary implements that are out there. Here are 16 crazy ones you probably don't want anywhere near you.
Space buffs take note: A science project called MAPPER is seeking citizen researchers to help aide in the search for off-world life on planets like our close neighbor, Mars.
History, made: The unmanned Dawn spacecraft has successfully entered orbit around Vesta, a massive asteroid some 117 million miles from our planet. This is the first spacecraft to orbit and object in our solar system's asteroid belt. [MSNBC]
Designer Chris Abbas collected a ton of Cassini photography from the Saturn mission and made this video. It is at times simultaneously eerie and awe-inspiring. This is not your father's NASA highlight reel.
Meet OSIRIS-REx, the NASA probe with the kingly name, which will be the first craft to visit an asteroid and bring pieces back to Earth. The probe, whose name stands for Origins Spectral-Interpretation Resource-Identification Security Regolith Explorer, launches in 2016.
It's official: NASA and the ESA will be sending specialized probes to the Jupiter moon Europa to further investigate that icy, ocean-y place for signs of life. In 2020. Patience!
In November, the Cassini probe got very, very close to Hyperion, one of Saturns many moons. These 61 frames comprise a fly-by movie of the moon. Defrost the thing and add some sour cream and it's good enough to eat!
On Friday, sometime around 1100 GMT, China sent a probe to the moon.
Fact: Space is a freak show. But that link goes to a post about deep space, beyond our solar system. Thanks to the IBEX probe, however, we're quickly learning that our own backyard is rife with the freaky-deaky too.
See that? It might be a dust particle from an asteroid! Or it might be a flake of dried skin from a man in the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency factory that built the Hayabusa probe. No one knows yet.
NASA captured the re-entry of Japan's troubled but still successful Hayabusa probe early this morning over Australia. The payload reportedly ejected without incident and parachuted to earth. What you see here is everything else going to hell (by design):