Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Tagged: Jet Propulsion Laboratory

  • Cassini’s first close flyby of Enceladus led to discovery of its subsurface ocean

    Laurel KornfeldFebruary 21st, 2017

    An unexpected finding during Cassini's first close flyby of Saturn's moon Enceladus led to the discovery of its subsurface ocean, which could, possibly, host microbial life.

  • MRO data utilized for Mars 2020 landing-site selection

    Paul KnightlyFebruary 11th, 2017

    NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) is providing the basis for evaluating eight prospective landing sites for the Mars 2020 rover mission.

  • Curiosity rover findings raise new questions about ancient environment on Mars

    Jim SharkeyFebruary 8th, 2017

    While NASA's "Curiosity" Mars rover has discovered considerable evidence that there was once liquid water on the Red Planet's surface, a recent study has posed a new question: How was the surface of Mars warm enough to keep the water unfrozen?

  • NASA developing AI for future exploration of extraterrestrial subsurface oceans

    Tomasz NowakowskiJanuary 29th, 2017

    NASA is developing technology that could enable autonomous navigation for future underwater drones studying subsurface oceans on icy moons like Jupiter’s Europa. The agency is working on artificial intelligence (AI) that would allow submersibles to make their own decisions during exploration of extraterrestrial water worlds.

  • Our Spaceflight Heritage: Mars Exploration Rover Spirit remembered 13 years after landing

    Curt GodwinJanuary 4th, 2017

    The landing of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit in January 2004 marked the beginning 13 years of continuous robotic operations on the surface of the Red Planet. In that time, multiple spacecraft, including Spirit, have beamed back textbook-rewriting information about past water activity on the red world.

  • NEOWISE detects two small objects approaching Earth’s orbit

    Laurel KornfeldDecember 30th, 2016

    A NASA mission whose goal is detecting asteroids and comets that come near Earth's orbit has recently spotted two: one a comet and one an apparent comet/asteroid hybrid, traveling in Earth's vicinity. Neither object presents any threat of impacting our planet.

  • NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is driving again, drill is still out of action

    Jim SharkeyDecember 24th, 2016

    NASA's "Curiosity" Mars rover drove, on Dec. 18, for about 10 meters from the spot where it had been stopped by ground engineers in order to determine the cause of its faulty drill.

  • Ceres covered in hidden ice, studies suggest

    Paul KnightlyDecember 19th, 2016

    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and NASA have announced a series of new findings from the Dawn spacecraft currently orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres that point to the existence of ice within its crust.

  • Review: Incredible Stories From Space

    Jason RhianDecember 18th, 2016

    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Having met Nancy Atkinson in the waning days of the Shuttle era, I was flattered when she asked me to write for Universe Today. I was flattered by her again when she asked me to review her book. Flattery gave way to respect and appreciation upon reading "Incredible Stories from Space".

  • Cassini sends back first photos taken from ring-grazing orbit

    Laurel KornfeldDecember 12th, 2016

    NASA's Cassini spacecraft has returned the first photographs of Saturn and its rings taken from its new, nine-month ring-grazing orbit phase.

  • Curiosity rover team troubleshoots drill problem

    Jim SharkeyDecember 10th, 2016

    NASA's Curiosity rover is currently studying its surroundings and monitoring the Martian environment, but not driving or using its arm for science, while the rover team investigates an issue with a motor that moves the rover's drill.

  • Cassini begins dive into Saturn’s rings

    Laurel KornfeldDecember 6th, 2016

    NASA's Cassini orbiter made its first dive into Saturn's ring system on Sunday, Dec. 4. It's the beginning of an endgame in which the spacecraft will fly across the ring plane and ultimately impact the giant planet on Sept. 15, 2017.

  • JPL uses metallic glass to make better robot gears

    Jim SharkeyDecember 2nd, 2016

    JPL is developing a metallic glass alloy, for use on deep space probes and rovers, that is resistant to the extreme cold temperatures encountered in space.

  • Cassini prepares to graze Saturn’s rings

    Paul KnightlyNovember 26th, 2016

    NASA's robotic Cassini spacecraft will begin a grand tour of Saturn’s ring system starting this week as the mission enters into its final stages.

  • NASA’s JPL looks to boost power from nuclear batteries

    Curt GodwinOctober 19th, 2016

    Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) have been the power source for many of the most ambitious exploration missions in NASA's history, powering spacecraft in areas too remote, or too impractical, for solar panels to provide sufficient electricity. A new development to this power-generating workhorse may soon substantially improve the capabilities of the RTG, possibly benefiting both interplanetary missions and daily life here on Earth.