New NASA Planetary Science Proposals Include Venus and 'Metallic Asteroid' Missions

Artist’s conception of the VERITAS spacecraft in orbit around Venus. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Looking ahead to future planetary missions, NASA has selected five new science investigations for refinement over the next year. Later, one or two of those missions will be chosen to actually be launched, perhaps as early as 2020. The selections […]

NASA's WISE Finds Mysterious Centaurs May Be Comets

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

The true identity of centaurs, the small celestial bodies orbiting the Sun between Jupiter and Neptune, is one of the enduring mysteries of astrophysics. Are they asteroids or comets? A new study of observations from NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) finds most centaurs are comets.

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NASA Announces Asteroid Grand Challenge

Image Credit: NASA

WASHINGTON — NASA announced Tuesday a Grand Challenge focused on finding all asteroid threats to human populations and knowing what to do about them.

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New Members of Asteroid Families Discovered by WISE

An asteroid “family” is comprised of fragments of a parent body that was broken up during a collision. Image Credit: NASA / JPL / Caltech

NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has found new members of asteroid families. This was accomplished by reviewing millions of images collected during the asteroid-hunting part of the […]

NASA-Funded Asteroid Tracking Sensor Passes Key Test

Asteroid exploration has taken on renewed importance in recent years, with the close passage of 2012 DA14 in February 2013 drawing worldwide public attention. In addition to the proposed NEOCam telescope mission, NASA has announced plans for this Asteroid Retrieval Spacecraft, which may culminate in a mission as early as 2021 to bring […]