Mars 2020 Rover Powers Up for Launch Next Year

The Mars 2020 rover under construction. The Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) will be inserted into the rear end of the rover between the panels with gold tubing, called heat exchangers. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s new Mars 2020 rover is now only about a year away from the start of its mission, and another […]

Curiosity Rover Makes Intriguing New Discoveries About Martian Organics and Methane

“Self-portrait” of the Curiosity rover on Vera Rubin Ridge. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Is there or has there ever been life on Mars? We still don’t know the answer for sure, but two new findings announced this morning by NASA during a live discussion provide more tantalizing clues. The new results come from the […]

‘Drill, Baby, Drill!’: Curiosity Rover Successfully Tests New Drilling Technique on Mars

Curiosity has successfully tested a new drilling technique in a rock target called Duluth. This is the first successful drilling since December 2016 after mechanical problems with the drill. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

After many months of testing and devising new techniques since experiencing mechanical problems, NASA’s Curiosity rover is finally drilling again! The […]

Goodbye, Murray Buttes: Curiosity Rover Continues Journey in Next Phase of Extended Mission

A “self-portrait” of Curiosity at the Quela drilling location at the base of one of the buttes in Murray Buttes. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Ever since first landing in August 2012, the Curiosity rover has helped to revolutionize our understanding of Mars and has seen some incredible scenery along the way. It has travelled […]

Mars Rovers Update: Curiosity Turns Toward Mount Sharp, Opportunity Finishes in Marathon Valley

Self-portrait of the Curiosity rover at the drill site called Okoruso, on Naukluft Plateau. The image was taken on May 11, 2016, (sol 1,338). Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

NASA’s current rovers, Curiosity and Opportunity, are continuing to explore their respective regions of Mars, with new findings that are providing yet more clues as to […]

Evidence from Curiosity Rover Shows Mars Once Had Oxygen-Rich Atmosphere

Mars’ atmosphere is thin, dry, and cold now, but it used to be thicker and contained a lot more oxygen. Image Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser

Mars’ atmosphere is thin and cold, composed primarily of carbon dioxide along with other trace gases and some water vapor. Evidence has continued to mount, however, that the rarified […]

Ten Years at Mars: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Celebrates a Decade of Discovery

Illustration of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) as it entered orbit ten years ago. Image Credit: NASA/JPL

The Martian rover Opportunity has become famous for its amazing longevity, but it is not the only one; orbiting spacecraft also usually enjoy long lifespans, and today the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is celebrating its 10th year exploring […]

Opportunity Rover Begins 'Mountain Climbing' Up Steep Ridge at Endeavour Crater

Panoramic view of Knudsen Ridge, where Opportunity has been climbing a steep 30 degree slope. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell/ASU/James Sorenson

NASA’s Curiosity rover on Mars may have been stealing the spotlight in recent years, but the other rover, Opportunity, is still going strong after 12 long years. Opportunity has survived the harsh environment and […]

'Cauliflower' Silica Formations on Mars: Evidence of Ancient Life?

Image of “cauliflower” silica formations found by the Spirit rover in 2008 near Home Plate in Gusev crater. Do they hold clues to ancient life on Mars? Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Was there ever life on Mars? That is one of the longest-running and most debated questions in planetary science, and while there have […]

2015 in Review: A Year of Spectacular Planetary Missions and Discoveries

High-resolution view of Pluto from New Horizons, showing rugged mountains and vast icy plains. Image Credit: NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI

To say that 2015 has been a great year for planetary exploration would be an understatement, with fantastic new discoveries from around the Solar System. From our first ever close-up look at Pluto and its moons, […]