Cassini: the Beginning of the End

A Long-running Cassini Enters Its Final Orbits It has been nearly 20 years since the Cassini Mission to Saturn started its grand adventure of exploration. Folks, this has been a mission for the record books. Not only has it been extended several times (and for good reasons!), it has been giving … Continue reading

Seven New Exoplanets Found

Upping the Ante on Earth-type Exoplanets The age of the exoplanets, worlds around other stars, just gets more exciting every day. Today, astronomers announced that they’ve found seven terrestrial planets around a small, very cool star called TRAPPIST-1. Three of those worlds are int he so-called “habitable zone” where conditions … Continue reading

Traversing Space on a Bridge of Stars

Magellnic Clouds star bridge

A Bridge of Stars between the Magellanic Clouds If you’ve ever been south of the equator, you’ve probably seen the Magellanic Clouds in the southern hemisphere sky. These two little galaxies  look like puffy clouds separated by a whole lot of space. It turns out that the light-years between them might … Continue reading

Spotting Planets Around Other Stars

planets

Clockwork Worlds: Recording Planets and their Orbits from a Distance Wow, this is really cool. Watch this little video a few times…it’s a time-lapse sequence of planets orbiting a star about 129 light-years away from us in the direction of the constellation Pegasus. The time-lapse was made over a period … Continue reading

The Last Man to Walk on the Moon Passes into History

R.I.P. Gene Cernan: Moon Explorer Today’s news that astronaut Andrew Eugene “Gene” Cernan died came just as I was finishing reading the book Fallen Astronauts. It’s the story of the astronauts and cosmonauts who died from the beginning of the Space Age up until the end of the Apollo missions. … Continue reading