Hubble Space Telescope

Goals: The Hubble Space Telescope was designed to provide clear and deep views of distant galaxies and stars and most of the planets in our solar system. Hubble’s domain extends from the ultraviolet, through the visible, and to the near-infrared. Accomplishments: Lasting far beyond its planned lifetime, Hubble has had a major impact in every […]

Continue Reading

Cassini

Goals: Cassini was designed to explore the Saturnian system from orbit: the planet and its atmosphere, rings and magnetosphere, and its moons, particularly Titan and the icy satellites. Cassini also carried Europe’s Huygens probe to its rendezvous with Titan. Accomplishments: After successfully completing the first in-depth, up-close study of Saturn and its realm from orbit, […]

Continue Reading

Rosetta

Goals: The European Space Agency’s Rosetta is the first mission designed to orbit and land on a comet. It consists of an orbiter and a lander — called Philae. The two spacecraft carry 20 science instruments to make a detailed study of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko for two years as it approaches our sun. Accomplishments: In August […]

Continue Reading

MESSENGER

Mission Overview Launched: Aug. 3, 2004 Mercury Orbit: March 17, 2011 Mission Completed: April 30, 2015 Goal: Understanding Mercury, the smallest, densest and least-explored of the terrestrial planets. MESSENGER was designed to map the surface composition, study the magnetic field and interior structure of our solar system’s smallest and innermost planet — Mercury. It carries eight instruments to study […]

Continue Reading