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Solar System

Mud Cracks on Mars Reveal Lake's History

Curiosity spotted polygonal shapes on the surface of rocks on Mars — now, analysis of these mud cracks is revealing the history of the long-ago lake that once filled Gale Crater.

Celestial News & Events

Mars Flies By Jupiter in a Close Dawn Conjunction

The new year opens with the magnificent pairing of the solar system's largest planet with one of its smallest.

Explore the Night with Bob King

Venus and Mars Kiss at Dawn

Be sure to set the alarm so you don't miss the squeaky-tight conjunction of Venus and Mars Thursday morning. They'll stay close through the weekend.

Solar System

Curiosity Rover Watches Clouds on Mars

Barely visible water-ice clouds coast across Mars’s skies in new videos from the Curiosity rover.

map near 8.3N lat, 47.95E

Solar System

How Hard Did It Rain on Ancient Mars?

Mars was once far wetter than it is now — but just how much rain fell, and when?

how sputtering works

Astrobiology

Mars Lost Atmosphere to Space

NASA’s MAVEN mission has confirmed that the solar wind stripped the Red Planet of its atmosphere.

New Year's Revelers Passing in the Night

Celestial News & Events

Mars Meets Neptune on New Year's Eve

Doing anything on New Year's Eve? Before you start toasting, don't miss an exceptionally close conjunction of Mars and Neptune.

Phobos, by ExoMars CASSIS instrument

Spacecraft and Space Missions

ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Gets to Work

Welcome to Mars: the European Space Agency's ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter sets up shop around the Red Planet.

EDM Lander

Spacecraft and Space Missions

ESA's Schiaparelli Lander: Missing in Action

Here's what we know so far about the fate European Space Agency's Schiaparelli mission.

EDM Lander

Astronomy in Space with David Dickinson

Schiaparelli Lander to Touch Down on Mars

The innovative joint European Space Agency/Roscosmos Schiaparelli lander begins its three day solo journey to the Martian surface this weekend.

Open All Night

Planets

Saturn's Splendid Summer Show

It's showtime for the King of the Rings! Time to get your telescope out to see and share Saturn, which comes to opposition this week.

Big, Bold Mars This Week

Planets

Follow Mars to His Double Star Lair

Let Mars be your guide to no fewer than 15 diverse and delightful double stars that pepper its path through Scorpius and Libra this opposition season.

Celestial News & Events

Mars Opposition: Best Showing in a Decade

At last, a fine Mars apparition: on May 22nd the Red Planet reaches opposition, shining almost as bright as Jupiter, and the planet makes its closest approach to Earth on May 30th.

Mars gravity map

Spacecraft and Space Missions

Mars Gravity Map

By tracking deviations in spacecraft orbits, planetary scientists have created a high-resolution map of the Red Planet's gravitational pull.

going to Mars

Solar System

NASA's Plans for Putting Humans on Mars

Scientists and engineers gathered together to figure out what would make a good Martian landing site and what hurdles they’ll have to overcome for a 2035 launch.

Mars's atmospheric loss

Spacecraft and Space Missions

Mars Losing Gas to Solar Wind

NASA’s Mars orbiter MAVEN has painted a detailed picture of how the solar wind robs the Red Planet of its atmosphere.

Hale Crater's dark streaks

Solar System

Waterlogged Salts on Mars

Scientists have confirmed that water-soaked salts likely create dark seasonal lines on Mars.

glass on Mars

Astrobiology

The Glint of Martian Glass

Scientists have detected glass in Martian craters, created by the fierce heat of impacts that melted the Red Planet’s surface.

MAVEN detects aurora

Spacecraft and Space Missions

MAVEN Spots Dust Cloud, Aurora on Mars

NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft has detected dust high in Mars’s atmosphere and auroras across the planet’s northern hemisphere.

Solar System

Curiosity Studies Mars Dry-out

Samples taken from two drill holes on Mars support the idea that Mars lost a whole lot of water fairly early in its history.

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