Space scientists have a busy decade ahead with plans to visit Jupiter, Mars, Mercury and other interplanetary bodies all on the cards.
We got you, Pluto!
In the long lead-up to our ultimate flyby of Pluto, space science has reconfigured our notions of what it means to be a solar system, a planet, a world.
Pluto’s newly clear topography.
NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute
Photos from the spacecraft's close approach are dazzling. They and other data from the mission will fill in some of the blanks about Pluto and provide a snapshot of the infant solar system.
Pluto’s enigmatic companion Charon.
What can the data from New Horizons tell us about the dwarf planet's five moons?
High resolution view of a 300 km wide region of Pluto. But where are the impact craters?
Lack of impact craters intrigues space experts who say it suggests the dwarf planet may be geologically active.
Artist’s impression Pluto and it’s largest satellite Charon. Is this how the dwarf planet will look as New Horizons swings past?
Pluto is one of the most enigmatic objects in our solar system, and its secrets are soon to be uncovered by the New Horizons probe.
An artist’s concept of a plume of water vapour thought to be ejected off the surface of Europa. Could life be beneath?
Jupiter's moon Europa is one of the most enticing objects in our solar system, and a future NASA mission may help reveal whether it is a suitable for life.
What mysteries lie beneath your icy crust, Europa?
NASA has now formally started to pack its bags for the next big discovery mission, this time heading to Jupiter’s icy moon Europa. Last month NASA announced the instruments that will fly on this trip and…
View from the hotel balcony?
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center
The turbocharged capitalism of private space flight is strangely at odds with the brotherly, generous global consensus that built the legal framework for extra-terrestrial travel.
Giant balloons can take scientific equipment to the edge of space much cheaper that satellites.
Giant balloons are a lot cheaper than rockets launchers in getting scientific equipment to the edge of space. But they don't always fly to plan.
Bigger but not better than Hubble. The James Webb’s primary mirror.
It's urgent that we turn our attention to a high definition space telescope that will allow us to directly image exoplanets.
Come in MESSENGER, your time is up.
NASA/JHU APL/Carnegie Institution of Washington
After ten years in space NASA probe will get up close and personal with Mercury a final time.
Cratered surface of Ceres in colour.
Approaching Ceres, the Dawn spacecraft reveals the dwarf planet in colour for the first time.
The view from the current International Space Station.
Whatever America's exact strategy in space, it doesn't seem to involve investing in a new International Space Station
Space suits you.
NASA's latest mission to the International Space Station is going to study muscle wasting, among other things. Here's what they hope to find out.
Time exposed photo of the Auroral Spatial Structures Probe Launch into the aurora.
The aurora borealis lights up the Arctic night skies. Also called the Northern Lights, the phenomenon is the result of beams of charged particles tracing along the Earth’s magnetic field and entering the…
Like many a scientist before me, I have spent this week trying to grow a crystal. I wasn’t fussy, it didn’t have to be a single crystal – a smush of something would have done – just as long as it had a…
Not yet, but soon … we’re getting closer to sending people to Mars.
It was an exciting year in space exploration, with mind-blowing triumphs and heart-breaking failures. On Earth, new rockets and spacecraft were tested by space agencies and commercial ventures. SpaceX…
Artist’s impression of New Horizons as it swings past the dwarf planet Pluto, in July 2015.
While the Mars Rovers and the Rosetta spacecraft will continue to make headlines in 2015, the stage is set for the solar system’s next great mission – the Pluto-bound New Horizons. Discovered in 1930…
Curiosity Rover has used its onboard lab to detect methane on the Martian atmosphere.
NASA has revealed that a whiff of methane has been detected twice in the last couple of years at the Martian surface by the Curiosity Rover. The source of the methane is uncertain. It is not even clear…