Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Tagged: Mars

  • Twin MarCO CubeSats launching alongside NASA’s InSight Mars mission

    Jim SharkeyApril 28th, 2018

    When the InSight Mars mission launches atop an Atlas V rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, two mini-satellites will be riding on the same rocket. The twin spacecraft, called Mars Cube One (MarCO), are the first NASA CubeSats designed to operate in deep space.

  • NASA’s exploration goals come into focus with updated road map

    Curt GodwinApril 20th, 2018

    Four months after President Trump directed NASA to return to the Moon, the agency has presented a road map to meet the goals outlined in Space Policy Directive-1. The updated plan shifts focus from the previous "Journey to Mars" campaign back to the Moon, and—eventually—to the Red Planet.

  • InSight lander nearly ready for journey to Mars

    Derek RichardsonApril 10th, 2018

    LOMPOC, Calif. — NASA’s InSight Mars lander is less than four weeks away from its planned launch to the Red Planet. The spacecraft is currently undergoing final preparations before leaving Earth atop an Atlas V rocket in early May 2018.

  • Curiosity Mars rover reaches 2,000 sol milestone

    Jim SharkeyMarch 25th, 2018

    NASA's Curiosity Mars rover team celebrated the vehicle's 2,000th Martian day, or sol, on the Red Planet on March 22, 2018.  An image mosaic taken in January shows the rover's next major scientific target, an area with clay-bearing rocks that researchers have studied from orbit.

  • NASA releases 360-degree video of InSight Mars lander test lab

    Jim SharkeyMarch 13th, 2018

    Scientists and engineers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) are using a replica of the upcoming InSight Mars lander to simulate conditions the spacecraft might face on the Red Planet's surface. The U.S. space agency released a 360-degree video tour of the In-Situ Instrument Lab, where the team is operating the "testbed" under a variety of different conditions.

  • Elon Musk says 1st flight of SpaceX’s Mars spaceship may happen in 2019

    Derek RichardsonMarch 12th, 2018

    While at South by Southwest, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said he believes the first test flights of SpaceX's "Big Falcon Rocket" (BFR) spaceship could happen in the first half of 2019, although he admits to having optimistic timelines.

  • NASA’s InSight spacecraft arrives at launch site

    Jim SharkeyMarch 3rd, 2018

    NASA's InSight spacecraft has arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California to begin final preparations for its launch in May. The spacecraft was flown aboard an Air Force C-17 from Lockheed Martin Space in Denver, Colorado, and arrived at Vandenberg at 3:49 p.m. PST (6:49 p.m. EST) on Wednesday, February 28.

  • Curiosity rover tests new drilling technique

    Laurel KornfeldMarch 2nd, 2018

    NASA's Curiosity rover conducted its first drilling in over a year on Feb. 26, 2018, to test a new technique developed by mission team members on Earth after the motor powering the drill's feed mechanism malfunctioned in December 2016.

  • What are some of the obstacles to NASA’s efforts to find life on Mars?

    Press ReleaseMarch 1st, 2018

    The possibility of life on Mars has grabbed the imagination for centuries, inspiring books, films, records, and Earthbound dreamers to gaze into the sky and wonder what could really be out there. NASA is now looking at ways to see of Mars was ever habitable and if it contains life today. The agency is working to overcome an array of hurdles to achieve this long-held dream.

  • How is NASA’s InSight Mars lander different from the Phoenix Mars lander?

    Jason RhianFebruary 26th, 2018

    In 2008, NASA's Phoenix Mars lander touched down in the Red Planet's polar region. Now InSight, which is based on the Phoenix lander, is being prepped for flight. The two probes are very similar in design, but what does InSight have that Phoenix didn't?

  • MRO image shows dust covering Phoenix landing site

    Laurel KornfeldFebruary 22nd, 2018

    An image of the 2008 Phoenix Mars landing site taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) nearly a decade after it touched down on the dusty plains of the Red Planet reveals dust has covered much of the site.

  • Could the X3 ion thruster propel us to Mars?

    Tomasz NowakowskiFebruary 19th, 2018

    The X3, a new ion thruster that could one day propel humans beyond Earth, was successfully tested a few months ago and is one design that could be selected by NASA as a component of propulsion system for future Mars missions.

  • Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in precautionary standby mode

    Laurel KornfeldFebruary 18th, 2018

    NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) placed itself into a precautionary standby mode after experiencing a sudden low battery voltage on February 15. 

  • Panoramic images show Curiosity’s route on Mars since 2012 landing

    Laurel KornfeldFebruary 1st, 2018

    Members of NASA's Curiosity team combined individual photos taken by the rover's Mast Camera (Mastcam) on the northern flank of Mount Sharp to create a panorama that overlooks the many sites the six-wheeled geologist has visited since landing on Mars in 2012.

  • Plasma technology could help produce sustainable oxygen supply for human colonies on Mars

    Tomasz NowakowskiJanuary 30th, 2018

    A future human colony on Mars will need a sustainable oxygen supply for its operations in the harsh Martian environment. A new research conducted by a team of Portuguese-French scientists suggests that plasma technology could be the key to producing the necessary amount of oxygen for crew activities on the Red Planet.