Like Earth, space has weather. Except instead of swirling winds and downpours of precipitation, space weather is defined by shifting electric and magnetic fields and rains of charged particles. At the very beginning of space, starting just 60 miles above Earth’s surface, there’s a layer of the atmosphere that shifts and changes in concert with both types of weather.
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In this episode of Gravity Assist, NASA’s Jim Green and Amy Simon discuss Uranus, Neptune, and Neptune’s intriguing moon – Triton -- and what we still have to learn about these mysterious bodies.
Just as the surface of oceans on Earth lies at an average elevation that we call “sea level,” Titan’s seas also lie at an average elevation.
In 2014, astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope found that this enormous galaxy cluster contains the mass of a staggering three million billion suns — so it’s little wonder that it has earned the nickname of “El Gordo” (“the Fat One” in Spanish)!
Astronomers gathering at the 231st meeting of the American Astronomical Society at National Harbor in Washington, D.C., will have a chance to learn about groundbreaking new research with NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. The new science discoveries with the Earth-orbiting observatory stretch from nearby star-forming regions, to the heart of our Milky Way galaxy, to the horizon of the observable universe.
The sixth planet from the Sun, Saturn is a gas giant that’s best known for its striking icy rings. How old are the rings, and how are they changing over time? And what’s up with Saturn’s mysterious hexagon-shaped storm in the north polar region? In this episode of Gravity Assist, NASA’s Planetary Science Director Jim Green talks with Cassini Project Scientist Linda Spilker about the ringed planet, its fascinating moons and propeller-like features, and the most startling discoveries from NASA’s Cassini mission.
Our solar system is a wondrous place with a single star, our Sun, and everything that orbits around it - planets, moons, asteroids and comets - what do we know about this beautiful solar system we call home? It's part of an even larger cosmos with billions of other solar systems.
With Jim Green today is the “man about Mars,” Bruce Jakosky from the University of Colorado. Bruce is the principal investigator of NASA's MAVEN mission. Joining them is Michael Meyer the lead Mars scientist at NASA Headquarters.
In 1968, Apollo 8 placed humans into lunar orbit for the first time. As the astronauts in their spacecraft emerged from behind the Moon, they were surprised and enchanted by an amazing view of Earth rising over the lunar horizon. Bill Anders quickly snapped a picture of the spectacular Earthrise.
Humankind viewed their planet and saw not a jigsaw puzzle of states and countries on an uninspiring flat map – but rather a whole planet uninterrupted by boundaries, a sphere of dazzling beauty floating alone in the void.
NASA has selected two finalist concepts for a robotic mission planned to launch in the mid-2020s: a comet sample return mission and a drone-like rotorcraft that would explore potential landing sites on Saturn’s largest moon, Titan.