Flying the Friendly Martian Skies: NASA to Test Mars Airplane Prototype

Artist's conception of the Prandtl-m airplane flying above the surface of Mars. Image Credit: NASA Illustration/Dennis Calaba

Artist’s conception of the Prandtl-m airplane flying above the surface of Mars. Image Credit: NASA Illustration/Dennis Calaba

For several decades, Mars has been a busy place, with orbiters, landers, and rovers providing unprecedented views of the Red Planet. Another exciting possibility which has yet to be realized is an airplane, which could soar through […]

SLS Development Engine Test Fire #4 Ignites With Longest Duration Firing Yet

RS-25 development engine test fire at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. Yesterday's test fire, the fourth in the first series of seven planned test fires, ran for 650-seconds, the longest SLS RS-25 test fire yet. Four RS-25 engines will power the core stage of NASA's new rocket, the Space Launch System. Credits: NASA/Stennis

RS-25 development engine test fire at Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Miss. Yesterday’s test fire, the fourth in the first series of seven planned test fires, ran for 650 seconds, the longest SLS RS-25 test fire yet. Four RS-25 engines will power the core stage of NASA’s new rocket, the Space Launch […]

Muddy Mars: New Evidence for Liquid Water Flows Within Past Million Years

Illustration of debris flows inside Istok crater on Mars, which have provided evidence of large amounts of flowing water and mud in the past. The flows are very similar to ones on Earth in Arctic regions such as Iceland. Image Credit: Nature Communications

The fact that Mars used to have large amounts of liquid […]

60,000 Laps and Counting, NASA's Odyssey Spacecraft Still Going Strong After 14 Years at Mars

An artist's concept of NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft orbiting Mars. The spacecraft, which arrived at the Red Planet in 2001, surpassed its 60,000th orbit as June 23, 2015, and it still going strong. Image Credit: NASA/JPL

An artist’s concept of NASA’s Mars Odyssey spacecraft orbiting Mars. The spacecraft, which arrived at the Red Planet in 2001, surpassed its 60,000th orbit as of June 23, 2015, and it is still going strong. Image Credit: NASA/JPL

It’s no secret that the various spacecraft NASA sends out across the Solar System on our […]

Methane Discovered in Martian Meteorites: A Clue to Possible Life?

Methane has been discovered in some meteorites originating from Mars. Could it be a clue to life? Image Credit: Image by Michael Helfenbein

Methane has been discovered in some meteorites originating from Mars. Could it be a clue to life? Image Credit: Michael Helfenbein

The puzzle of methane on Mars has taken an interesting new twist: For the first time, the gas has been detected within Martian meteorites. The finding adds another layer to the ongoing controversy over […]

Early Mars May Have Been Cold and Icy Rather Than Warm, According to New Study

Conceptual image of the two competing warm or cold models of early Mars. Image Credit: Robin D. Wordsworth

Conceptual image of the two competing warm and cold models of early Mars. Image Credit: Robin D. Wordsworth

The debate over whether Mars used to be warmer and wetter or colder and wetter earlier in its history has been a long and contentious one. Now, a new study suggests it may be the latter, that […]

Mars Cube One: New Deep-Space CubeSats Will Travel to Mars Along With InSight Lander

Artist's conception of the MarCO CubeSats flying past Mars as the InSight lander descends to the surface. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Artist’s conception of the MarCO CubeSats flying past Mars as the InSight lander descends to the surface. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

The next NASA mission to Mars, the InSight lander, will include some additional experimental technology: the first deep-space CubeSats. Two small CubeSats will fly past the planet as the lander is descending through the […]

NASA's Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Wraps Up Second Test Flight

From NASA: “LDSD is proceeding toward launch. The large scientific balloon – 34.4 million cubic feet in volume, has been undoing inflation over the last hour. When launched, the balloon and the test vehicle stand at a towering 980 feet tall.” The second test of LDSD took place Monday, June 8. Photo Credit: NASA

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Impact Glass Discovered on Mars: How It Might Help In Search for Evidence of Past Life

Image from the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM) instrument on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, showing deposits of impact glass (green) in Alga Crater. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/JHUAPL/Univ. of Arizona

For the first time, impact glass has been detected on the surface of Mars; the discovery not only provides new information about the formation […]

NASA Begins Testing of InSight Mars Lander for Launch in 2016

Testing of the solar arrays on the InSight lander at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Lockheed Martin

Testing of the solar arrays on the InSight lander at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Denver. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Lockheed Martin

While Curiosity and Opportunity are still busy roving Mars, NASA has begun testing its next lander, InSight, scheduled to launch in March 2016. It will be the first mission devoted to studying the interior of […]