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Origin and evolution of life
Meteorites, Comets and Asteroids
Outer solar system
Moon to Mars
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Image of the Day
Saturn Titan system
Saturn Tethys system
Artist’s impression of Voyager 2 and Uranus.
The above image is a color composite made from short exposures, showing the disk of Uranus with some cloud features. Just to the left and right of the color image of the disk are a combination of deeper, panchromatic images showing Uranus’s inner rings; the brightest is the Epsilon Ring. The satellite Mab is visible as eight dots adjacent to the outer ring on the right side. Credit: NASA
The Hubble Space Telescope photographed a new pair of rings around Uranus and two new, small moons orbiting the planet. The largest ring is twice the diameter of the planet’s previously known rings; the rings are so far from the planet that they are being called Uranus’ “second ring system.” One of the new moons shares its orbit with one of the rings. Analysis of the Hubble data also reveals the orbits of Uranus’ family of inner moons have changed significantly over the past decade. Credit: NASA
Radiation of CH4 and CO2 molecules with sunlight leads to the formation of complex organic molecules, including organic acids and other oxygenated hydrocarbons. Ultimately, these molecules condense into aerosol particles, and may have led to the formation of a global haze layer on the early Earth. Image is an illustrative composite prepared by Melissa G. Trainer using images of Titan and Earth. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
An artist’s impression of hydrocarbon pools, icy and rocky terrain onthe surface of Titan. Image credit: Steven Hobbs (Brisbane, Queensland,Australia).
An artist´ impression of Ganesa Macula, a mountain on Saturn´ moon Titan believed to be an “ice volcano” that periodically belches “lava” containing liquid water. Research by University of Arizona graduate student Catherine Neish suggests this water may react with organic compounds in Titan´ atmosphere to create complex molecules similar to those on the early Earth. Credit: Michael Carroll
ESA´ Huygens Probe is seen floating on a hydrocarbon lake on Saturn´ moon Titan in an artist´ impression. Research by University of Arizona graduate student Catherine Neish suggests Titan´ atmosphere may contain complex molecules similar to those on the early Earth. Credit: NASA/JPL and Gregor Kervina, Ljubljana, Slovenia.
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Temp Distribution Venus
3D Venus Magellan
Venus Surface Magellan
Venus cloud cover
Late Heavy Bombardment
Qaidam Basin yardang
Central Asia’s Qaidam Basin
Mercury north pole
Machaut crater Mercury
Comet Impact Into Jupiter
Subtle Ripples in Jupiter’s Ring
Grand Track Scenario
Mercury impact craters
Galactic cosmic rays and Mercury
Mercury magnetic field
MESSENGER global imaging
Hollows on Mercury
Mercury Hollows 2
fresh crater on Mercury
Eris and Dysmonia
Magellan image of tidally-locked Venus
Lightning on Venus
Solar System color-color diagram
Active volcano on Venus
Sulphur dioxide levels on Venus
Artist impression of the early Earth
The planet Mercury, with enhanced colors to indicate distinct chemical, mineralogical, and physical regions across the cratered surface.
Hypothetical planet around a cool star
Around two billion years from now the Earth would have warmed, boiling away the oceans and eradicating all forms of life. However Griffin suggests that the microbial world might be the last state of life to be found on our planet, before the Sun grows so hot that, they too, are snuffed out. Image Credit: Detlev Van Ravenswaay/SPL
Hubble Sees Evidence of Water Vapor at Jupiter Moon
Knobby terrains in Arcadia Planitia, northern lowland of Mars (HiRISE ESP_019853_2410)
Megablocks of varying sizes embedded within mass-transportdeposits of the Jackfork Group in Arkansas, USA. Pinnacle State Park exposure. Image facilitated by Roger Slatt.
LLNL scientist Benjamin Santer and his climbing group ascend Mt. St. Helens via the “Dogshead Route” in April 1980, about a month before its major eruption. The group was the last to reach the summit of Mt. St. Helens before its major eruption that May. New research by Santer and his colleagues shows that volcanic eruptions contribute to a recent warming “hiatus.”
False colour composite of a ‘glory’ seen on Venus on 24 July 2011. The image is composed of three images at ultraviolet, visible, and near-infrared wavelengths from the Venus Monitoring Camera. The images were taken 10 seconds apart and, due to the motion of the spacecraft, do not overlap perfectly. The glory is 1200 km across, as seen from the spacecraft, 6000 km away. Copyright ESA/MPS/DLR/IDA
Three images showing the glory at ultraviolet (left,) visible (centre) and near-infrared (right) wavelengths as taken by the Venus Monitoring Camera. The feature was observed on 24 July 2011 and measures 1200 km across, as seen from the spacecraft, 6000 km away. Copyright ESA/MPS/DLR/IDA
Simulated views of the glory phenomena on Venus (left) and Earth (right), without considering any effects of haze or background cloud brightness. Glories occur when sunlight shines on cloud droplets – water particles in the case of Earth, sulphuric acid particles for Venus. The main difference between the appearance of the glory on Venus and on Earth is not because of composition, but rather the particle size. Cloud droplets on Earth are typically between 10 and 40 thousandths of a millimetre in diameter, but on Venus the droplets found at the cloud tops are much smaller, typically no more than 2 thousandths of a millimetre across. Because of this, the coloured fringes are further apart than they would appear on Earth. Copyright C. Wilson/P. Laven
Stanford assistant professor Kate Maher holds up two different soil types. The soil on the left is young, dark, and composed of more chemically reactive minerals. The sample on the right is older and made up of less reactive minerals such as clays. Matthew Rothe.
This image shows a long collection of ridges and scarps on the planet Mercury called a fold-and-thrust belt. The belt stretches over 336 miles (540 kilometers). The colors correspond to elevation—yellow-green is high and blue is low. Image courtesy NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
The Martian landscape appears barren today, but Curiosity is helping scientists piece together the Red Planet’s watery past.Credit: NASA/JPL-CalTech
Measuring geological timeTwo pyroclastic vents on the floor of Mercury’s Kipling crater, top, would likely not have survived the impact; they are more recent. The false color image of the same spot, bottom, marks pyroclastic material as brownish red.