Image of space poster outside APL's Space Exploration Sector
2022-01-20

Johns Hopkins APL Names Robert D. Braun as Space Exploration Sector Head

Robert D. Braun has been announced as the next head of APL’s Space Exploration Sector. Braun has more than 30 years of experience as a space systems engineer, technologist and organizational leader. He will guide the efforts in both civilian space exploration as well as national security related space programs.
Rendering of the Europa Clipper Spacecraft with Jupiter and Europa in the background
2022-01-10

Johns Hopkins APL Team Delivers Critical Parts for Europa Clipper’s Mapping Instrument

A Johns Hopkins APL team recently completed work on an instrument that will be critical to determining the habitability of Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons that’s most likely to harbor life.
Rendering of the DART spacecraft behind two asteroids
2021-12-22

With Its Single “Eye,” NASA’s DART Returns First Images From Space

Just two weeks after liftoff, NASA’s DART spacecraft, which Johns Hopkins APL designed, built and manages, opened the door to its DRACO camera and returned its first star-filled images. The images will help researchers calibrate for DART’s ultimate goal of crashing into an asteroid.
A spacecraft flies high above the blue and cloud-covered Earth
2021-12-07

TIMED Flies Past 20 Years of Exploring Earth’s Gateway to Space

Exactly 20 years ago today, NASA’s TIMED mission launched from the California coast on a journey to unveil new secrets about the upper climes of Earth’s atmosphere. Developed in part by Johns Hopkins APL, the mission’s unrivaled 20-year dataset has provided crucial insights about space weather, Earth’s climate and the evolution of planetary atmospheres.
Auroras dance in the sky above a line of evergreen trees in shadow
2021-12-01

The Space Weather Science and Observation Gap Analysis

As humanity becomes more reliant on satellite technology for key aspects of society on Earth, space weather continues to play an increasingly important role in the success of our species. The recent gap analysis report led by Johns Hopkins APL researchers found that we can significantly improve our space weather prediction capabilities with current technology.
The SpaceX rocket carrying DART sits on the launch pad with the DART and NASA logos apparent
2021-11-24

NASA’s DART Spacecraft Launches in World’s First Planetary Defense Test Mission

After a decade in the making, NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, which Johns Hopkins APL built and is managing, launched from the California coast early Wednesday morning. It set off to perform the world's first full-scale test to defend Earth from a potential asteroid or comet threat.
Image from space of the Moon
2021-11-18

Lunar Vertex: Solving Mysteries Swirling around the Moon’s Magnetic Regions

Scientists believe that so-called magnetic anomalies hold clues to conditions on the Moon and other worlds throughout the solar system. To find out, APL leads a project not just to visit the most famous of these areas on the lunar surface but to drive right across it.
A glowing cone heats a small disc of silicon-germanium
2021-10-25

Reviving a Legacy Technology for Spacecraft Exploration

A legacy material called silicon-germanium is making a comeback in NASA’s next-generation nuclear power source for spacecraft, thanks in part to recent work by an APL-led team. Its resurgence will enable NASA missions to travel farther and longer than current capabilities allow.
The DART spacecraft placed in its specialize container
2021-10-20

DART Arrives at Vandenberg Space Force Base, Its Final Stop Before Launch

Just two days after leaving Johns Hopkins APL in a specialized container, NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) spacecraft arrived at Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, where it is scheduled to launch in late November.
Image of the Moon, with half of its visible face lit
2021-10-11

New Moon-Based Study Again Shows Spacecraft Could Answer Neutron Lifetime Mystery

Just a year after a team from Johns Hopkins APL and Durham University showed for the first time that spacecraft could help end a decades-long stalemate on how long a neutron can last outside an atom’s nucleus, the team has done it again. In a new study using lunar data, the team made a tenfold improvement on their last estimate, drawing closer to answering a question that will improve our understanding of the early universe.