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Moons and Rings: Our Favorite Things
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7 Mar 2013 Cassini Makes Last Close Flyby of Saturnian Moon Rhea
NASA's Cassini spacecraft will be swooping close to Saturn's moon Rhea on Saturday, March 9, the last close flyby of Rhea in Cassini's mission. The primary purpose will be to probe the internal structure of the moon by measuring the gravitational pull of Rhea against the spacecraft's steady radio link to NASA's Deep Space Network here on Earth. The results will help scientists understand whether the moon is homogeneous all the way through or whether it has differentiated into the layers of core, mantle and crust.
28 Jan 2013 Senkyo and Vortex on Titan
The Cassini spacecraft simultaneously peered through the haze in Titan's equatorial region down to its surface and captured the vortex of clouds hovering over its south pole just to the right of the terminator on the moon's dark side.
14 Jan 2013 When Huygens Met Titan
Eight years ago today, the European Space Agency's Huygens bounced, slid and wobbled its way to rest on the surface of Saturn's moon Titan. It had been "dropped off" 21 days before by NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The anniversary marks a touchdown on the most remote alien surface ever visited by a landing probe. A new animation created by ESA presents the last part of the two-and-a-half-hour descent through Titan's thick atmosphere on to the moon's surface on Jan. 14, 2005. The animation was created using real data recorded by Huygens' instruments.
10 Jan 2013 Parting Moon Shots from NASA's GRAIL Mission
Three days prior to its planned impact on a lunar mountain, mission controllers activated the camera aboard one of NASA's GRAIL twins to take some final photos from lunar orbit.
29 Dec 2012 LRO Lets You Stand on the Rim of Aristarchus Crater
Have you ever looked up at the bright, cavernous Aristarchus Crater on the Moon through a telescope or binoculars and wondered what it would be like to stand on the rim and peer inside? Spectacular new views from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is almost as good as being there, and a new video lets you "rappel" down and take a closer look at the west side of the crater walls.
18 Dec 2012 From Cassini for the Holidays: A Splendor Seldom Seen
Just in time for the holidays, NASA's Cassini spacecraft, in orbit around Saturn for more than eight years now, has delivered another glorious, backlit view of the planet Saturn and its rings.  On Oct. 17, 2012, during its 174th orbit around the gas giant, Cassini was deliberately positioned within Saturn's shadow, a perfect location from which to look in the direction of the sun and take a backlit view of the rings and the dark side of the planet.
13 Dec 2012 Mountains of Titan
This map of Saturn's moon Titan identifies the locations of mountains that have been named by the International Astronomical Union. By convention, mountains on Titan are named for mountains from Middle-earth, the fictional setting in fantasy novels by J.R.R. Tolkien.   The map uses data collected by both the Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) and Radar instruments on NASA's Cassini spacecraft.
12 Dec 2012 Cassini Spots Mini Nile River on Saturn Moon
Scientists with NASA's Cassini mission have spotted what appears to be a miniature, extraterrestrial likeness of Earth's Nile River: a river valley on Saturn's moon Titan that stretches more than 200 miles (400 kilometers) from its "headwaters" to a large sea. It is the first time images have revealed a river system this vast and in such high resolution anywhere other than Earth.  Scientists deduce that the river, which is in Titan's north polar region, is filled with liquid hydrocarbons because it appears dark along its entire length in the high-resolution radar image, indicating a smooth surface.
11 Dec 2012 Apollo's Lunar Dust Data Being Restored
Forty years after the last Apollo spacecraft launched, the science from those missions continues to shape our view of the moon. In one of the latest developments, readings from the Apollo 14 and 15 dust detectors have been restored by scientists with the National Space Science Data Center (NSSDC) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD.The Lunar Dust Detectors that were placed on the lunar surface during Apollo 14 and 15 measured dust accumulation, temperature and damage caused by high-energy cosmic particles and the sun's ultraviolet radiation.  
26 Nov 2012 Cassini Finds a Video Gamers' Paradise at Saturn
Scientists with NASA's Cassini mission have spotted a second feature shaped like the 1980s video game icon in the Saturn system, this time on the moon Tethys. (The first was found on Mimas in 2010). The pattern appears in thermal data obtained by Cassini's composite infrared spectrometer, with warmer areas making up the Pac-Man shape.
15 Nov 2012 Old Telescope May Get New Moon Impact Mission
The European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel space telescope, due to end its mission observing the infrared universe in March, may be sent on a crash course with the Moon next summer to search for water embedded beneath the lunar surface.
10 Nov 2012 New 2013 Phases of the Moon Animation Released
The animation shows at hourly intervals, the geocentric phase, libration, position angle of the Moon's axis, and apparent diameter of the Moon throughout the year 2013. Topographic measurements by the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter aboard the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter make it possible to simulate shadows on the Moon's surface with unprecedented accuracy and detail.
16 Oct 2012 At Pluto, Moons and Debris May Be Hazardous to New Horizons
"We've found more and more moons orbiting near Pluto -- the count is now up to five," says Alan Stern, principal investigator of the New Horizons mission and an associate vice president of the Space Science and Engineering Division at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI). "And we've come to appreciate that those moons, as well as those not yet discovered, act as debris generators, populating the Pluto system with shards from collisions between those moons and small Kuiper Belt objects."
11 Oct 2012 Bounce, Skid, Wobble: How Huygens Landed on Titan
The European Space Agency's Huygens probe, ferried to Saturn's moon Titan by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, bounced, slid and wobbled its way to rest in the 10 seconds after touching down on Titan in January 2005, a new analysis reveals. The moon's surface is more complex than previously thought.
31 Aug 2012 International Observe the Moon Night is September 22!
International Observe the Moon Night has created the opportunity for people to take notice of the Moon's beauty and share that experience with one another. Through this event, we hope to instill in the public a sense of wonderment and curiosity.
15 Aug 2012 Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Spectrometer Detects Helium in Moon's Atmosphere
Scientists using the Lyman Alpha Mapping Project (LAMP) spectrometer aboard NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) have made the first spectroscopic observations of the noble gas helium in the tenuous atmosphere surrounding the Moon.

Although designed to map the lunar surface, the LAMP team expanded its science investigation to examine the far ultraviolet emissions visible in the tenuous atmosphere above the lunar surface, detecting helium over a campaign spanning more than 50 orbits.
11 Jul 2012 Hubble Discovers New Pluto Moon
Pluto's new-found moon, visible as a speck of light in Hubble images, is estimated to be irregular in shape and between 10 and 25 kilometres across. It is in a 95 000 kilometre-diameter circular orbit around Pluto.
8 Jun 2012 Students share MoonKam findings in DC
Middle-school students and their teachers gathered in Washington on June 1, 2012 to demonstrate science lessons and highlight images they took from lunar orbit using NASA's lunar orbiting GRAIL spacecraft and its MoonKAM system.
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