NASA: Explore the Solar System With NASA’s New-and-Improved 3D ‘Eyes’

NASA: Explore the Solar System With NASA’s New-and-Improved 3D ‘Eyes’. “NASA has revamped its ‘Eyes on the Solar System’ 3D visualization tool, making interplanetary travel easier and more interactive than ever. More than two years in the making, the update delivers better controls, improved navigation, and a host of new opportunities to learn about our incredible corner of the cosmos – no spacesuit required. All you need is a device with an internet connection.”

NASA: ‘Disk Detective’ Needs Your Help Finding Disks Where Planets Form

NASA: ‘Disk Detective’ Needs Your Help Finding Disks Where Planets Form. “Planets form from gas and dust particles swirling around baby stars in enormous spinning disks. But because this process takes millions of years, scientists can only learn about these disks by finding and studying a lot of different examples. Through a project called Disk Detective, you can help. Anyone, regardless of background or prior knowledge, can assist scientists in figuring out the mysteries of planet formation. Disk Detective is an example of citizen science, a collaboration between professional scientists and members of the public.”

Space: You can build your own Earth 2.0 with the awesome website ‘Earth-like’

Space: You can build your own Earth 2.0 with the awesome website ‘Earth-like’. “You can now build your very own Earth 2.0! A new website allows users to create an Earth-like planet with a wide selection of options in an effort to demonstrate how many of the new exoplanets lauded as ‘Earth-like’ may not resemble our planet at all. The researchers behind this website hope to clear up some of the confusion about what the phrase ‘Earth-like’ really means.”

Planetary Society: New Cameras on Mars!

Planetary Society: New Cameras on Mars!. “There was jubilation when InSight landed, but I’m just as happy to be writing about a distinct InSight event: The flow of raw images sent from Mars, straight to the Web, has begun. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has begun sharing images from InSight’s two cameras to the mission website.”

Sky & Telescope: Amateur Planet Hunters Have a New Online Resource

Sky & Telescope: Amateur Planet Hunters Have a New Online Resource. “Searching for planets outside our solar system might seem like a task best left to the pros. But amateurs have quite a bit to contribute as well. That’s the impetus for a new online database for collecting and archiving amateur exoplanet observations. The database, managed by the non-profit American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO), will provide a central hub for the long-term monitoring that is essential for refining the orbits and properties of known exoplanets as well as looking for hints of worlds that have yet to be discovered.”

Space: Travel Through Space and Time with 400 Years of Planetary Maps

Space: Travel Through Space and Time with 400 Years of Planetary Maps. “Maps are a key tool for making sense of places we live or hope to one day explore, so it’s no wonder that for hundreds of years, humans have been creating maps of other worlds in our solar system. And more than 2,200 such maps, created over the course of four centuries, are now gathered on one website, unveiled at last week’s European Planetary Science Congress held in Berlin. The website, called the Digital Museum of Planetary Mapping, allows you to browse images by the decade of their creation, the world they depict or the type of data the map displays.”

Phys .org: Scientist develops database for stellar-exoplanet ‘exploration’

Phys .org: Scientist develops database for stellar-exoplanet ‘exploration’. “[Dr. Natalie] Hinkel built a publically available database, called the Hypatia Catalog, to help researchers explore thousands of stars, as well as potential star-exoplanet systems, observed over the last 35 years. It’s the largest database of stars and their elements for the population within 500 light years of our Sun. At last count, Hypatia had stellar chemical abundance data on 6,156 stars, 365 of which are known to host planets. The database also catalogs 72 stellar elements from hydrogen to lead.”

Starchive: The Open Access, Open Source Stellar Database (Habitable Worlds 2017)

This is a PDF, from Habitable Worlds 2017: Starchive: The Open Access, Open Source Stellar Database. “The Starchive… is an open source, open access stellar database. It will host observable, physical, and derived properties of stars and planets as well as observational data such as direct imaging (AO and seeing limited), spectra, light curves, and other time series data sets. ”

TechCrunch: Google AI helped find the first solar system outside our own with 8 planets

TechCrunch: Google AI helped find the first solar system outside our own with 8 planets. “Google and NASA today announced the discovery of a new planet in solar system Kepler 90, achieved using machine learning. By applying neural networking to Kepler data, scientists have found, for the first time, an eighth planet in the Kepler-90 system – this ties the Kepler-90 system with our own system for the most planets in any known system.”

Google Blog: Space out with planets in Google Maps

Google Blog: Space out with planets in Google Maps. “Twenty years ago, the spacecraft Cassini launched from Cape Canaveral on a journey to uncover the secrets of Saturn and its many moons. During its mission, Cassini recorded and sent nearly half a million pictures back to Earth, allowing scientists to reconstruct these distant worlds in unprecedented detail. Now you can visit these places—along with many other planets and moons—in Google Maps right from your computer. For extra fun, try zooming out from the Earth until you’re in space!”

Space.com: Think You Can Find Planet 9? Check Out This Citizen-Science Project

NASA is doing some crowdsourcing to help explore space. “For this project, participants are asked to look through data collected by NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) and help to separate real objects from system artifacts that can look like real objects (false positives). Citizen scientists will look for spots of light that move across the sky, signaling that those points of light are objects relatively close to Earth compared to the background stars.”

First Global Topographic Map of Mercury is Now Available

The first global topographic map of Mercury is now available. “The first topographic map of Mercury was released today by the U.S. Geological Survey, Arizona State University, Carnegie Institute of Washington, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and NASA. This high-resolution map provides the first comprehensive view of Mercury’s entire surface, illustrating the planet’s craters, volcanoes and tectonic landforms.”