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2014

Mars-Flyby Comet in False Color

Mars-Flyby Comet in False Color - November 07, 2014

This movie sequence of images from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) shows comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring before and after its close pass by Mars in October 2014. False color enhances subtle variations in brightness in the comet's coma. The images were obtained by MRO's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera between October 17 and 20, 2014. For more information on these images and future updates, see http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu. HiRISE is one of six instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The University of Arizona, Tucson, operates HiRISE, which was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colorado. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona


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Mars Orbiter Observes Comet Siding Spring

Mars Orbiter Observes Comet Siding Spring - November 07, 2014

This movie begins with an animation (artist's rendering) of NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft above Mars. The scene zooms into an "X-ray" view of the spacecraft, revealing the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera. The movie then transitions to a sequence of HiRISE images of the comet taken as it flew past Mars. The images were obtained by HiRISE between October 17 and 20, 2014. For more information on these images and future updates, see http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu. HiRISE is one of six instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The University of Arizona, Tucson, operates HiRISE, which was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colorado. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona


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Observing Comet Siding Spring at Mars

Observing Comet Siding Spring at Mars - October 17, 2014

On October 19, Comet Siding Spring will pass within 88,000 miles of Mars - just one third of the distance from the Earth to the Moon! Traveling at 33 miles per second and weighing as much as a small mountain, the comet hails from the outer fringes of our solar system, originating in a region of icy debris known as the Oort cloud. Comets from the Oort cloud are both ancient and rare. Since this is Comet Siding Spring's first trip through the inner solar system, scientists are excited to learn more about its composition and the effects of its gas and dust on the Mars upper atmosphere. NASA will be watching closely before, during, and after the flyby with its entire fleet of Mars orbiters and rovers, along with the Hubble Space Telescope and dozens of instruments on Earth. The encounter is certain to teach us more about Oort cloud comets, the Martian atmosphere, and the solar system's earliest ingredients. Credit: NASA/GSFC


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NASA's Mars Odyssey Maneuvers to Image Comet Siding Spring

NASA's Mars Odyssey Maneuvers to Image Comet Siding Spring - October 17, 2014

Mars program Chief Engineer Robert Shotwell describes Mars Odyssey's unprecedented view of comet Siding Spring as the comet sweeps by the Red Planet on Oct. 19 and how it will maneuver to take images.


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PDF: Transcript (16 Kb)
Comet Siding Spring Wide Shots

Comet Siding Spring Wide Shots - October 14, 2014

This visualization show MAVEN and Comet Siding Spring making their way through the solar system to a close encounter near Mars. This animation moves the camera in a bit closer and more parallel with the ecliptic plane as the comet and MAVEN encounter the Martian region. Credit: NASA/GSFC/SVS


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Comet Siding Spring Wide Shots (Fixed)

Comet Siding Spring Wide Shots (Fixed) - October 14, 2014

This visualization show MAVEN and Comet Siding Spring making their way through the solar system to a close encounter near Mars. This animation maintains a fixed camera above the ecliptic plane of the solar system. Credit: NASA/GSFC/SVS


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Comet Siding Spring: A Close Encounter with Mars

Comet Siding Spring: A Close Encounter with Mars - October 09, 2014

Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring will make a close flyby of Mars on Oct. 19, 2014. At a distance of only 87,000 miles - about 1/3 the distance between the Earth and moon - it's a near miss of the Red Planet. Find out how NASA's Mars orbiters will evade dust from the comet.


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Animation of Comet Siding Springs' Close Encounter With Mars

Animation of Comet Siding Springs' Close Encounter With Mars - October 09, 2014

Comet Siding Spring C/2013 A1 will make a very close flyby of Mars on Oct. 19, 2014. NASA is taking steps to protect its Mars orbiters, while preserving opportunities to gather valuable scientific data.


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What's Up for October?

What's Up for October? - October 01, 2014

A lunar eclipse, a solar eclipse and Mars has a close encounter with a comet.


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Curiosity Rover Report: A Taste of Mount Sharp

Curiosity Rover Report: A Taste of Mount Sharp - September 25, 2014

NASA's Curiosity Mars rover has collected its first sample from the base of Mount Sharp. The scientific allure of the layered mountain drew the team to choose this part of Mars as a landing site.


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Investigating the Martian Atmosphere

Investigating the Martian Atmosphere - September 18, 2014

The Martian surface bears ample evidence of flowing water in its youth, from crater lakes and riverbeds to minerals that only form in water. But today Mars is cold and dry, and scientists think that the loss of Mars' water may have been caused by the loss of its early atmosphere. NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN mission, or MAVEN, will be the first spacecraft devoted to studying the Red Planet's upper atmosphere, in an effort to understand how the Martian climate has changed over time.


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MAVEN Targeting Mars

MAVEN Targeting Mars - September 8, 2014

NASA's MAVEN spacecraft is quickly approaching Mars on a mission to study its upper atmosphere. When it arrives on September 21, 2014, MAVEN's winding journey from Earth will culminate with a dramatic engine burn, pulling the spacecraft into an elliptical orbit.


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We made it! Curiosity reaches Mount Sharp

We made it! Curiosity reaches Mount Sharp - September 11, 2014

After 2 years and nearly 9 kilometers of driving, NASA's Mars Curiosity has arrived at the base of Mount Sharp to begin a whole new phase of exploration.


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Opportunity's Long Tracks on Crater Rim

Opportunity's Long Tracks on Crater Rim - September 09, 2014

Overhead and on-the-ground views of the 25-mile journey NASA's Opportunity Mars rover has made since landing in 2004.


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Colliding Atmospheres: Mars vs Comet Siding Spring

Colliding Atmospheres: Mars vs Comet Siding Spring - August 06, 2014

Comet Siding Spring is about to fly historically close to Mars. The encounter could spark Martian auroras, a meteor shower, and other unpredictable effects. Whatever happens, NASA's fleet of Mars satellites will have a ringside seat.


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High-Def Video of NASA's 'Flying Saucer' Test

High-Def Video of NASA's 'Flying Saucer' Test - August 08, 2014

LDSD principal investigator Ian Clark takes us through a play by play of NASA's 'Flying Saucer' Test in Hawaii, showing us high-definition video shot from cameras on board and on the ground.


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A Softer Trek to Mount Sharp

A Softer Trek to Mount Sharp - August 05, 2014

On the second anniversary of NASA Curiosity on Mars, the rover navigates a sandy valley on its way to Mount Sharp


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Flash from Curiosity Rover's Laser Hitting a Martian Rock

Flash from Curiosity Rover's Laser Hitting a Martian Rock - July 16, 2014

The sparks that appear on the baseball-sized rock result from the laser of the ChemCam instrument on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover hitting the rock.

ChemCam's laser zapping of this particular rock was the first time the team used Curiosity's arm-mounted Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera to try and capture images of the spark generated by the laser hitting a rock on Mars.

The process, called laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, hits a target with pulses from a laser to generate sparks, whose spectra provide information about which chemical elements are in the target. Multiple laser shots are fired in sequence, each blasting away a thin layer of material so that the following shot examines a slightly deeper layer. In this case, "Nova" displayed an increasing concentration of aluminum as a series of laser shots from the rover penetrated through dust on the rock's surface.

The video is compiled from single images from the MAHLI camera, taken during the 687th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (July 12, 2014).


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LDSD Test Vehicle Returns

LDSD Test Vehicle Returns - July 02, 2014

NASA's saucer-shaped test vehicle, the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) was recovered from the ocean and returned to Port Allen, Kauai, on June 29, 2014.


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Curiosity Completes Its First Martian Year

Curiosity Completes Its First Martian Year - June 23, 2014

On June 24, 2014, NASA's Curiosity rover completes her first Martian year (687 Earth days). Hear team members describe how the mission accomplished its main goal to find a past habitable environment on the Red Planet and the ongoing science studies.


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Mercury in Front of the Sun, Seen From Mars

Mercury in Front of the Sun, Seen From Mars - June 10, 2014

Mercury passed in front of the sun on June 3, 2014, as viewed from Mars. The Mast Camera on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover recorded the event.


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LDSD: The Great Shakeout Test For Mars

LDSD: The Great Shakeout Test For Mars - June 03, 2014

NASA readies for the experimental flight of a test vehicle designed for landing larger payloads on Mars.


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Mars Weathercam Helps Find Big, New Crater

Mars Weathercam Helps Find Big, New Crater - May 22, 2014

Scientists using NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter found a fresh meteor-impact crater, and by golly it's big. It's the largest ever located anywhere by using before-and-after pictures.


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We Brake for Mars: Part 2

We Brake for Mars: Part 2 - May 21, 2014

In part 2, JPL engineer Mike Meacham explains how an inflatable decelerator will help large spacecraft land on Mars.


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NASA's Path to Mars

NASA's Path to Mars - April 29, 2014

Get an inside look at NASA's next steps in deep space exploration -- from the space station, to an asteroid and on to the human exploration of Mars.


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Lunar Eclipse As Seen From The Moon (artist concept)

Lunar Eclipse As Seen From The Moon (artist concept) - April 15, 2014

With the lunar horizon in the foreground, the Earth passes in front of the Sun, revealing the red ring of sunrises and sunsets along the limb of the Earth. The "No Stars" frames omit the starry background and include an alpha channel.


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LDSD: We Brake for Mars

LDSD: We Brake for Mars - April 09, 2014

NASA tests a supersonic parachute under Mars-like conditions for future exploration.


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Acing the Test: Human Deep Space Exploration Systems Progress

Acing the Test: Human Deep Space Exploration Systems Progress - March 11, 2014

A quick look at what's been going on in the Orion, Space Launch System and Ground Systems Development and Operations programs.


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Studying the Solar Wind on Mars

Studying the Solar Wind on Mars - March 05, 2014

Robert Lin, the late director of the Space Sciences Laboratory, discusses how NASA's MAVEN spacecraft will study the interaction of the Martian atmosphere with the solar wind. MAVEN's findings will reveal how Mars lost its early atmosphere, turning it from a warm, wet planet into the cold, dry one that we see today.


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Rover's 5K Run

Rover's 5K Run - February 14, 2014

Curiosity logs 5K after a punishing trek over sharp terrain. To celebrate, JPLers put on their running shoes!


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Opportunity: 10 Years on Mars - Operating a Rover

Opportunity: 10 Years on Mars - Operating a Rover - January 23, 2014

See how Mars Exploration Rover team members take on the demands of driving a rover millions of miles away from Earth.


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Opportunity: 10 Years on Mars - Science

Opportunity: 10 Years on Mars - Science - January 23, 2014

Find out how the Mars Exploration Rover team traversed the Red Planet, examined the diverse environment and transformed our understanding of Mars.


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10 Years on Mars: How Spirit & Opportunity Affected Our Lives

10 Years on Mars: How Spirit & Opportunity Affected Our Lives - January 23, 2014

Some of the team members from NASA's Mars Exploration Rover project were still in college -- or even high school -- when the rovers landed in 2004. Hear their stories of becoming part of this remarkably long-lived and successful mission.


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