Planetary Environments Laboratory (699) Press Releases & Feature Stories Archive

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Laser Blasts Show Asteroid Bombardment, Hydrogen Make Great Recipe for Life on Mars

03.25.2019
A new study reveals asteroid impacts on ancient Mars could have produced key ingredients for life if the Martian atmosphere was rich in hydrogen. An early hydrogen-rich atmosphere on Mars could also explain how the planet remained habitable for a while after its atmosphere thinned.

NASA Mission Reveals Asteroid Has Big Surprises

03.19.2019
A NASA spacecraft that will return a sample of a near-Earth asteroid named Bennu to Earth in 2023 made the first-ever close-up observations of particle plumes erupting from an asteroid’s surface.

NASA Invites Media to 57th Annual Robert H. Goddard Memorial Symposium

03.15.2019
Media are invited to the 57th Robert H. Goddard Memorial Symposium on March 20-21.

A Region of Bennu’s Northern Hemisphere Close Up

03.14.2019
These images were taken on February 25 while the spacecraft was in orbit around Bennu, approximately 1.1 miles (1.8 km) from the asteroid’s northern hemisphere.

NASA to Host Media Teleconference on Asteroid Sample Return Mission

03.14.2019
NASA is hosting a media teleconference at 1:30 p.m. EDT Tuesday, March 19, to announce new science from the agency’s first mission to return to Earth an asteroid sample that may contain unaltered material from the very beginning of our solar system.

Five Teams Win NASA DALI Awards to Advance Future Lunar Missions

02.27.2019
The agency’s Development and Advancement of Lunar Instrumentation, or DALI, program recently awarded 10 teams funding to mature spacecraft-based instruments for use in future lander missions, including those offered by commercial ventures through the Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) contract.

NASA Selects Experiments for Possible Lunar Flights in 2019

02.21.2019
NASA has selected 12 science and technology demonstration payloads to fly to the Moon as early as the end of this year, dependent upon the availability of commercial landers.

NASA's OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Arrives at Asteroid Bennu

12.03.2018
NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft completed its 1.2 billion-mile (2 billion-kilometer) journey to arrive at the asteroid Bennu Monday.

TAGSAM Testing Complete: OSIRIS-REx Prepared to TAG an Asteroid

11.16.2018
On Nov. 14, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft stretched out its robotic sampling arm for the first time in space.

NASA Brings its Science and Supercomputing Advances to SC18

11.05.2018
From designing rocket launch pad components and safer rotorcraft to improving flood and drought forecasts to modeling the formation of planetary disks, NASA will highlight supercomputing advances at SC18, the International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis, Nov. 12 to 15 in Dallas.

Samuel Teinturier - From Concert Halls to Consorting With the Mars Rover’s SAM

10.30.2018
Samuel Teinturier is a physicist at Goddard who works with the Sample Analysis instrument on the Mars rover Curiosity.

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx Begins Asteroid Operations Campaign

08.24.2018
OSIRIS-REx, caught its first glimpse of asteroid Bennu last week and began the final approach toward its target.

NASA Team Demonstrates “Science on a Shoestring” with Greenhouse Gas-Measuring Instrument

08.14.2018
A novel instrument that has already proven its mettle on field campaigns will attempt to measure atmospheric greenhouse gases from an occultation-viewing, low-Earth-orbiting CubeSat mission called Mini-Carb early next year — marking the first time this type of instrument has flown in space.

The Next Step in NASA’s Hunt for Life: Scientist Begins Developing Instrument for Finding Extraterrestrial Bacteria

08.09.2018
A NASA scientist wants to create a planetary robot that would mimic what biologists do every day in terrestrial laboratories: look through microscopes to visually identify microbial life living in samples.

NASA Goddard’s Science Jamboree Connects Disciplines and Interns

07.26.2018
The Goddard Science Jamboree provides an opportunity for interns and senior scientists alike to learn more about the science happening in other disciplines in one room.

NASA’s MAVEN Spacecraft Finds That “Stolen” Electrons Enable Unusual Aurora on Mars

07.23.2018
NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft just found a new type of Martian aurora that occurs over much of the day side of the Red Planet, where auroras are very hard to see.

Successful Second Deep Space Maneuver for OSIRIS-REx Confirmed

07.03.2018
New tracking data confirms that NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft successfully completed its second Deep Space Maneuver (DSM-2) on June 28. DSM-2 was OSIRIS-REx’s last deep space maneuver of its outbound cruise to the asteroid Bennu, with arrival scheduled for Dec. 3.

OSIRIS-REx Executes Second Deep Space Maneuver

06.28.2018
NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft executed its second Deep Space Maneuver today, which put the spacecraft on course for its scheduled arrival at the asteroid Bennu in December. The mission team will continue to examine telemetry and tracking data as they become available and will have more information on the results of the maneuver over the next week.

NASA Finds Ancient Organic Material, Mysterious Methane on Mars

06.07.2018
NASA’s Curiosity rover has found new evidence preserved in rocks on Mars that suggests the planet could have supported ancient life, as well as new evidence in the Martian atmosphere that relates to the search for current life on the Red Planet.

Scientists Shrink Chemistry Lab to Seek Evidence of Life on Mars

05.24.2018
An international team of scientists has created a tiny chemistry lab for a rover that will drill beneath the Martian surface looking for signs of past or present life.

2020 Decadal Survey Missions: At a Glance

04.24.2018
Any telescope that reaches the launch pad in the 2030s likely will look much different than the concepts four teams are currently studying to inform the 2020 Decadal Survey for Astrophysics, but the studies do offer a roadmap.

NASA Teams Study the Agency’s Future in Astrophysics; Tackle Formidable Technology Challenges

04.24.2018
As in past decades, the agency won’t make that decision in a vacuum or without understanding the technical obstacles, which are formidable.

New Exoplanet Collaboration Hosts Meeting to Explore Molecular Seeds of Life

04.09.2018
The Sellers Exoplanet Environments Collaboration (SEEC) hosts its first annual symposium April 9-13. Researchers will discuss how our knowledge of the early solar system can help the hunt for life on other worlds.

Jennifer Eigenbrode Asks If We Are Alone in the Universe

02.20.2018
Jennifer Eigenbrode, a science pioneer, asks, "Are we alone in the universe?"

Celebrating 60 Years of Groundbreaking U.S. Space Science

01.31.2018
Sixty years ago, the U.S. launched Explorer 1, rocketing into the Space Age.
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