The NASA spacecraft is designed to answer a 42-year-old mystery about lunar dust, but it's also snapping photos along the way.
To be successful Mars colonists, future astronauts will need to know both the potential hazard and utility of the soil. One unusual compound that has garnered quite a bit of attention is called perchlorate; it has the potential to be both a blessing and a curse for future explorers.
On Monday, far beyond the orbit of Mars, an alarm clock went off and a robot began the slow process of waking up after a long, cold sleep. The European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft is now approaching the comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, which it will catch up with this May.
John Dobson, the co-founder of San Francisco Sidewalk Astronomers and the inventor of a telescope that people can build themselves, died on January 15 in Burbank. He was 98. For decades, Dobson introduced the public to the sky, setting up telescopes in cities and parks and inviting passers-by to take a look into space. And […]
Let's take a moment to tally a few of 2013's highlights of astronomy and space exploration. In brief, it was a very good year on a number of fronts.
From the debut of the world's largest solar plant to Comet ISON, zombified bees to the physics of sailing — it's been another year of diverse storytelling from the KQED Science team. Here's a round-up of our top 10 stories (based on page views) that you've enjoyed in 2013.
Comet ISON is gone, Comet Lovejoy remains and a sun-grazing asteroid, 3200 Phaeton, is showing comet-like behavior. An interesting December to say the least.
In San Francisco this week, NASA scientists presented rare video footage of the Earth and moon, plus a first for citizen space science.
If you had to make a choice to shut down either the Mars rover Curiosity or that explorer of the Saturn system Cassini, would you deliver a pink slip to the young, eager, energetic newbie or force an early retirement on a veteran explorer who has delivered volumes of knowledge?
Comet ISON may not have survived its close brush with the Sun, but astronomers are still going to "study the heck out of it," says Foothill College astronomy professor Andrew Fraknoi.
Steve Jurvetson is a leading Silicon Valley venture capitalist and a board member of rocket maker and launch services company, SpaceX. He shares what it takes to launch a successful start-up in the high-stakes space industry.
Commercial space ventures are taking off and opening up space like never before. With its culture of risk and game-changing startups, Silicon Valley is playing a starring role in many of these new space companies. But risks and costs emerge with the increasing privatization of space.
There's been a great deal of anticipation surrounding Comet ISON—and a great deal of debate about whether it will become a Comet of the Century, or fizzle out like so many other comets of the century have in the past. ISON is now visible in binoculars, which may bode well for a good sky show in the coming weeks.
Every 11 years, the magnetic field of the sun changes its polarity (in fact, this may already be happening) sending a ripple of changing current out way past Pluto, to the outer reaches of the heliosphere. This solar "flip" is happening now.