Kayak on Titan? Soar past exoplanets? Epic new NASA video envisions future space travel

A new NASA video advertises a suite of the agency’s real-life missions as previewing an “Exoplanet Travel Bureau” of the future. The one-minute short on YouTube, released Oct. 19, reimagines a set of exploration posters released by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 2015 and in 2016 as animated futuristic mini-adventures. (The posters themselves were inspired … Read more

NASA’s Powerful New Telescope Could Transform How We Search For Life on Exoplanets

When it finally launches, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will give us our best look yet at the Universe around us – it’s the largest and most powerful telescope humans have ever built, and a new preprint study says it could spot potential signs of alien life in as little as 20 hours of … Read more

NASA to Use Artificial Intelligence to Discover Rogue Exoplanets Wandering the Galaxy

Researchers have developed a new method to detect rogue planets outside the solar system, worlds that wander their galaxies alone without a parent star. The technique, devised by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center scientist, Richard K. Barry, unites astronomy’s future—in the form of the soon-to-launch Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope—with its past, a method used … Read more

UTAS student off to NASA after using gravitational microlensing to discover exoplanets

Deep in Tasmanian bushland, a discovery mission is underway. Key points: PhD candidate Katie Vandorou is measuring the mass of planets thousands of light-years away She is using a relatively new technique called gravitational microlensing Ms Vandorou is heading to NASA later in the year to continue her research PhD candidate at the University of Tasmania, … Read more

The Small Satellite That Will Characterize The Atmosphere of Exoplanets

Pandora is a SmallSat mission designed to study the atmosphere of exoplanets and was selected as part of NASA’s Astrophysics Pioneers Program. Transmitting exoplanet transmission spectroscopy provides our best opportunity to identify the composition of planetary atmospheres in the next decade. Variations in stellar brightness due to star spots, however, can impact these measurements and … Read more