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E.g., 07/15/2019
E.g., 07/15/2019
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  • Lisa with moon rocks
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Your search has returned 1847 articles:
  • Feature

    How NASA has kept Apollo moon rocks safe from contamination for 50 years

    I’m not allowed to touch the moon rocks.

    In the room where NASA stores the samples that Apollo astronauts brought to Earth decades ago, I peer at rocks and trays of dirt through glass. But my tour guides are firm: Nobody touches the moon rocks.

    This is the pristine sample lab at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. Being here is a big deal for me. I’ve spent years looking at...

    07/15/2019 - 07:00 Planetary Science, Astronomy
  • Feature

    Apollo astronauts left trash, mementos and experiments on the moon

    Once on the moon, Apollo astronauts had two major goals: get themselves and the moon rocks home safe.

    To make space on the cramped lunar modules for the hundreds of kilograms of moon samples, the astronauts had to go full Marie Kondo. Anything that wasn’t essential for the ride home got tossed: cameras, hammocks, boots and trash. Downsizing also meant abandoning big stuff, like moon...

    07/15/2019 - 06:06 Planetary Science, History of Science
  • Reviews & Previews

    Celebrate the moon landing anniversary with books that go beyond the small step

    Astronomy lovers are not the only ones excited about the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Publishers are also taking note, serving up a pile of books to mark the occasion.

    Are you looking for a general overview of the birth of the U.S. space program? Would you rather geek out on the technical details of the Apollo missions? How about flipping through a collection of photographs from...

    07/14/2019 - 06:00 Planetary Science, History of Science
  • News

    Hayabusa2 may have just snagged bits of asteroid Ryugu’s insides

    The Hayabusa2 spacecraft has made its second and final attempt to grab a pinch of dust from asteroid Ryugu. At about 9:06 p.m. EDT on July 10, the Japanese spacecraft briefly touched down near an artificial crater it had previously blasted into the 4.5-billion-year-old asteroid’s surface. If the dust grab went well, it’s the first spacecraft to ever collect a sample from an asteroid’s insides...

    07/11/2019 - 10:38 Planetary Science
  • Science Visualized

    See how visualizations of the moon have changed over time

    Look up at the moon and you’ll see roughly the same patterns of light and shadow that Plato saw about 2,500 years ago. But humankind’s understanding of Earth’s nearest neighbor has changed considerably since then, and so have the ways that scientists and others have visualized the moon.

    To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, here are a collection of images that...

    07/10/2019 - 06:00 Planetary Science, Science & Society, Technology
  • Essay

    Ancient humans used the moon as a calendar in the sky

    The sun’s rhythm may have set the pace of each day, but when early humans needed a way to keep time beyond a single day and night, they looked to a second light in the sky. The moon was one of humankind’s first timepieces long before the first written language, before the earliest organized cities and well before structured religions. The moon’s face changes nightly and with the regularity of...

    07/09/2019 - 08:00 Anthropology, Archaeology, Planetary Science
  • Letters to the Editor

    Readers wanted to know about asteroids, lithium batteries and more

    Heat keepers

    Long ago, molten iron could have erupted from metal asteroids in a process scientists refer to as ferrovolcanism, Lisa Grossman reported in “Metal asteroids may have once had iron-spewing volcanoes (SN: 5/11/19 & 5/25/19, p. 5). 

    “In the cold vastness of space, how long are these rocks expected to keep their thermal energy?” asked online reader Bronze Condor.

    ...

    07/06/2019 - 06:15 Planetary Science, Earth, Neuroscience
  • News in Brief

    With Dragonfly, NASA is heading back to Saturn’s moon Titan

    Fifty years after Apollo 11, NASA is gearing up for a whole new kind of moonshot. The agency’s next solar system exploration mission will send a drone-like rotorcraft to Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, NASA announced June 27 in a news teleconference.

    “Titan is unlike any other place in our solar system, and the most comparable to early Earth,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said at the...

    06/27/2019 - 18:16 Planetary Science
  • News

    How NASA’s portable atomic clock could revolutionize space travel

    Traveling the solar system could one day be as easy as taking a bus to work. Scientists envision self-driving spaceships ferrying astronauts through deep space, and GPS-like systems guiding visitors across the terrains of other planets and moons. But for those futuristic navigation schemes, spacecraft and satellites would need to be equipped with clocks that keep time with extreme precision —...

    06/21/2019 - 07:00 Technology, Planetary Science
  • News in Brief

    Table salt may be hiding in Europa’s underground sea

    What flavors our food may also season the sea of Jupiter’s moon Europa.

    Sulfate salts were thought to lurk in the watery ocean under the moon’s icy crust. But data from the Hubble Space Telescope suggest that common table salt dominates the sea’s chemistry, researchers report June 12 in Science Advances.

    “This could mean that the ocean chemistry is more similar to what we’re used...

    06/14/2019 - 11:02 Astronomy, Planetary Science