August 22, 2019

Hayabusa 2 cleared for second touchdown on asteroid

July 3, 2019

Ground teams have approved plans for Japan’s Hayabusa 2 sample return mission to briefly land on asteroid Ryugu for the second time July 11, aiming for a targeted touch-and-go to gather material exposed by an explosive impactor released by the robot explorer in April.

ESA books launch of Jupiter orbiter with Arianespace

June 19, 2019

The European Space Agency has reserved an Ariane launcher to send a spacecraft toward Jupiter in May 2022, and the mission’s project manager said Tuesday officials could assign the probe to Europe’s new Ariane 6 rocket, assuming the vehicle has a successful debut by the end of 2020.

10 years since its launch, NASA lunar orbiter remains crucial for moon landings

June 18, 2019

Scientists marked the 10th anniversary of the launch of NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter on Tuesday, celebrating a mission that has greatly outlived its original one-year design life and continues taking high-resolution pictures to help U.S. companies and international space agencies select destinations for moon landers.

Japanese probe readies for another possible touch-and-go on asteroid

June 6, 2019

Approaching the one-year anniversary since its arrival at asteroid Ryugu, Japan’s Hayabusa 2 spacecraft has deployed a target marker near an artificial crater created by an explosive charge in April, a guide post that could help the probe steer toward another pinpoint touchdown to collect a second batch of samples for return to Earth.

Scientists call on InSight’s robotic arm to assist stalled heat probe on Mars

June 6, 2019

Later this month, ground teams will send commands for the InSight lander on Mars to use its robotic arm in a series of carefully-choreographed movements to help inspect, and potentially assist, one of the mission’s main geologic instruments that stalled as it hammered into the Red Planet’s crust earlier this year.

NASA picks three companies to send commercial landers to the moon

June 4, 2019

NASA has announced that Astrobotic, Intuitive Machines and OrbitBeyond won contracts to deliver science instruments and technology demonstration payloads to the moon’s surface in the first of a series of robotic missions preceding a human return to the moon.

NASA chooses Maxar to build keystone module for lunar Gateway station

May 24, 2019

NASA has selected Maxar Technologies for a $375 million contract to design, build and launch the core element of a mini-space station in orbit around the moon that will double as a deep space research outpost and a staging point for future human expeditions to the lunar surface.

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