32 results
Sun and forming planets

Solar System

Mixed Message from Asteroid Belt

New compositional map of the main asteroid belt shows that minor planets are not strongly grouped by composition, as had been thought, but instead are mixed up.

Space Missions

Sleep of Death for China's Lunar Rover?

Reports suggest that something went wrong as the Yutu rover prepared to hibernate through the long lunar night. The glitch could be the end of the little robot.

Celestial News & Events

Mercury's Best Show of 2014

Mercury puts on its best show of the year for mid-northern latitudes around the end of January.


New View of Lagoon Nebula

A new image of the Lagoon Nebula from the Paranal Observatory in Chile provides a stunning view the iconic object, which lies 5,000 light-years from Earth in Sagittarius.

Space Missions

The End of Rosetta's Big Sleep

Europe's comet-chasing spacecraft woke up after a 957-day-long hibernation to begin the most comprehensive comet study to date. Part of its mission: attempt to place an instrumented lander on a comet’s nucleus for the first time.


Gaia Launches to Pinpoint a Billion Stars

Gaia launched flawlessly Thursday morning at 9:12 UTC (4:12 a.m. Eastern Standard Time). This long-awaited mission will precisely map the distances and motions of 1 billion stars in our galaxy.

Solar System

Comet ISON: What We've Learned

Comet ISON's untimely demise didn’t prevent scientists from studying it, revealing the comet to be smaller than previously thought and harboring high concentrations of carbon.

Solar System

New View of Saturn's Hexagon

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has captured phenomenal images of the gigantic weather system at Saturn's north pole. This so-called "hexagon" is nearly three times wider than Earth is.


Triple Collision in Infant Galaxy

A complex of three bright, star-forming clumps called Himiko is merging in the early universe. With its light reaching us from when the universe was only 800 million years old, this primordial galaxy could yield insight into the elusive process of early galaxy formation.

Space Missions

China Launches Lunar Mission

If all goes well, on December 14th the Moon will host its first soft-landing spacecraft since 1976.

Space Missions

Kepler Mission Hits 3,500 Candidates

The Kepler team has released its analysis of the mission’s first three years of observations. The haul includes 10 Earth-size (and probably rocky) exoplanets in their stars’ habitable zones, and the stats show such planets are common.


A Bite-Size Planetary System

Planet Hunters citizen-science program identifies 14 exoplanet candidates the Kepler mission missed, including a seventh planet in a known system, making it the first seven-planet system discovered.