News articles tagged with "planetary_science"

04/03/2014 11:00:06
Kimm Fesenmaier
In 2005, NASA's Cassini spacecraft sent pictures back to Earth depicting an icy Saturnian moon spewing water vapor and ice from fractures, known as "tiger stripes," in its frozen surface. It was big news that tiny Enceladus—a mere 500 kilometers in diameter—was such an active place. Since then, scientists have hypothesized that a large reservoir of water lies beneath that icy surface, possibly fueling the plumes. Now, using gravity measurements collected by Cassini, scientists have confirmed that Enceladus does in fact harbor a large subsurface ocean near its south pole, beneath those tiger stripes.
04/23/2013 23:32:56
Douglas Smith
John Grotzinger, Caltech’s Fletcher Jones Professor of Geology and project scientist for Curiosity—JPL’s newest Mars rover, exploring the floor of Gale Crater—will describe its discoveries so far during a free public lecture on Wednesday, April 24.
03/15/2013 10:10:08
Marcus Woo

Although Keith Matthews was about to make history, he went about his tasks like any others.

03/12/2013 12:28:49
Marcus Woo

PASADENA, Calif.—Thanks to a new high-tech gadget, astronomers have observed four planets orbiting a star relatively close to the sun in unprecedented detail, revealing the roughly ten-Jupiter-mass

03/05/2013 08:23:38
Kimm Fesenmaier
If you could lick the surface of Jupiter's icy moon Europa, you would actually be sampling a bit of the ocean beneath. So says Mike Brown, an astronomer at Caltech. Brown and Kevin Hand from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have found the strongest evidence yet that water from the vast liquid ocean beneath Europa's frozen exterior actually makes its way to the surface.
01/24/2013 15:52:31
Brian Bell
John A. Johnson, assistant professor of planetary astronomy at Caltech, received the 2012 Newton Lacy Pierce Prize at the 221st meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS), in Long Beach, California.
01/02/2013 18:37:19
Marcus Woo
Look up at the night sky and you'll see stars, sure. But you're also seeing planets—billions and billions of them. At least. That's the conclusion of a new study by astronomers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) that provides yet more evidence that planetary systems are the cosmic norm. The team made their estimate while analyzing planets orbiting a star called Kepler-32—planets that are representative, they say, of the vast majority in the galaxy and thus serve as a perfect case study for understanding how most planets form.
12/13/2012 19:57:09
Douglas Smith
A new era in planetary science began in 1962, when Mariner 2 and the 200-inch Hale telescope simultaneously took a close look at Venus.
11/27/2012 16:29:47
Ann Motrunich
The confirmed count of planets in other solar systems has skyrocketed to more than 850, plus thousands of identified candidates. The opportunity to characterize so many solar systems has brought together Caltech planetary scientists and astronomers, who are forming a Center for Planetary Astronomy.
11/19/2012 22:33:03
Douglas Smith
On November 20, 1969, Apollo 12 astronauts Charles Conrad and Alan Bean paid a visit to JPL's Surveyor 3, which had landed on the moon two and a half years earlier.
10/16/2012 09:03:06
Douglas Smith
Fifteen years after its launch, the Cassini mission to Saturn continues to give us a close-up, long-term view of the ringed planet and its astonishingly diverse collection of moons. Here are some of the highlights so far.
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