A Billion Miles to Saturn: 20 Years Since the Launch of Cassini

The second Titan IVB roars aloft on 15 October 1997, carrying the Cassini mission to Saturn. Photo Credit: NASA

In the pre-dawn darkness of 15 October 1997, exactly two decades ago, this very day, one of the largest and most powerful rockets ever brought to operational service was poised for launch on Space Launch […]

Complexity and Challenge: Dawn Project Manager Speaks of Difficult Voyage to Vesta and Ceres

This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Dawn spacecraft heading toward the dwarf planet Ceres. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

A decade of operations in deep space is no longer a unique understanding, as we have seen in recent weeks, as Cassini ended 13 years of spectacular science at Saturn and the international Dawn mission celebrated ten years exploring […]

Two Missions to Two Worlds: Ten Years of Exploration by NASA's Dawn Spacecraft

A processed still image from Dawn with Ceres as a crescent as seen on April 10, 2015. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

Ten years ago, NASA’s Dawn spacecraft launched atop a Delta II Heavy booster from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., bound for one of the most audacious missions of exploration ever undertaken in human history. […]

Ten Years of Dawn: A Decade of Operations for Humanity's First Double-Orbiter

This artist’s concept shows NASA’s Dawn spacecraft heading toward the dwarf planet Ceres. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

“I’m ecstatic,” said Sarah Gavit of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in December 2001, when the space agency announced that the Dawn mission to orbit and explore the dwarf planets Ceres and Vesta—a pair of worlds deep within the […]

And Then Silence: 25 Years Since the Rise and Fall of Mars Observer

What might have been? Artist’s concept of Mars Observer in orbit around the Red Planet. Image Credit: NASA

“Range Safety Command Destruct System has been armed…fuel valves are now being opened…”

It was Friday, 25 September 1992—a quarter-century ago—as NASA counted down the final moments on Earth of its first voyage to the Red […]

'Sustained Program of Exploration': 20 Years Since the Arrival of the Mars Global Surveyor

Artistic rendering of Mars, made from images taken with NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft. Image Credit: Kees Veenenbos/MOLA Science Team/NASA

Twenty years ago, this week, NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor settled into orbit around the Red Planet, to begin what NASA described as “a sustained program of exploration” of our third-closest celestial neighbour after the […]

Four Decades, Four Planets: Voyager 2 Celebrates 40 Years of Deep Space Exploration

The Voyager adventure began 40 years ago, today, on 20 August 1977. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Forty years ago, today, on 20 August 1977, a space explorer rose from Earth on a multi-decade adventure, which would unveil all four of the Solar System’s giant gaseous planets in unprecedented detail. Despite being originally detailed to visit […]

After Four Month Hiatus, ULA Returns to Flight With Early-Morning TDRS-M Launch

After four months on the ground, United Launch Alliance (ULA) returns to flight on Friday, 18 August, delivering NASA’s latest Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) to orbit. Photo Credit: Alan Walters/AmericaSpace

United Launch Alliance (ULA) successfully delivered the latest member of NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System (TDRSS) into Geostationary Transfer Orbit […]

NASA Space Communications Operations to Extend Through 2030, With Friday Launch of TDRS-M

Originally scheduled to launch on 3 August, NASA’s next Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) will now launch on 18 August, atop an Atlas V 401 booster. Photo: AmericaSpace / Jeff Seibert

More than 30 years since its maiden launch—and having enabled near-continuous communications traffic between dozens of Space Shuttle and International Space Station […]

Storms Threaten Post-Landing Securing of Falcon 9 First Stage on Monday

A successful test fire of the Falcon 9 for next week’s CRS-12 launch, NET Aug 14. Photo Credit: AmericaSpace/Jeff Seibert

Weather conditions are expected to be broadly favorable around midday Monday, as SpaceX prepares to return to flight after an Eastern Range-enforced month-long hiatus in flights from the East Coast. Current plans call for […]