NASA’s DART Spacecraft Launches in World’s First Planetary Defense Test MissionAfter 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.
Lunar Vertex: Solving Mysteries Swirling around the Moon’s Magnetic RegionsScientists 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.
Reviving a Legacy Technology for Spacecraft ExplorationA 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.
DART Arrives at Vandenberg Space Force Base, Its Final Stop Before LaunchJust 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.
New Moon-Based Study Again Shows Spacecraft Could Answer Neutron Lifetime MysteryJust 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.
DART Gets Its CubeSat Companion, Its Last Major PieceShortly after it arrived at Johns Hopkins APL, the Italian Space Agency’s first-ever deep-space miniaturized satellite, called LICIACube, was installed on DART. The CubeSat will snap images of DART as it performs its final maneuver: a deliberate crash into an asteroid.
NOAA Selects Johns Hopkins APL’s George Ho for Space Weather Advisory GroupGeorge Ho, a space and planetary physicist at Johns Hopkins APL, was tapped by NOAA to serve on its new Space Weather Advisory Group. The board will counsel the federal government on mitigating and responding to the deleterious effects of space weather on the nation’s space assets and humanity.
Psyche’s Gamma Ray and Neutron Detection Instrument Arrives in California for Spacecraft InstallationAfter five years of developing and testing a complex gamma-ray and neutron detection instrument for NASA’s Psyche mission, the world’s first mission to study a potentially metal-rich asteroid, the APL Psyche team can finally take a breather. The instrument safely arrived at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California on Aug. 2.
The Van Allen Probes Transformed Everything We Know About Earth’s Radiation Belts. What’s Next?Nine years after NASA’s Van Allen Probes launched into space to study the radiation environment around Earth, APL gathered scientists and satellite operators from around the world to discuss the future of space weather research, including ways to protect astronauts and satellites. Here are their four big takeaways.
Johns Hopkins APL’s Parvathy Prem Honored for Early-Career Contributions to Space ExplorationThe Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute honored APL researcher Parvathy Prem with the Susan Mahan Niebur Early Career Award, recognizing her contributions to space science and exploration.
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News & Stories from the APL Newsroom