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NEWSLETTER JULY 2013
PLANETVAC IS MOVING FORWARD Meet the Team and
Learn What They are Doing
We are very excited
that after lots of discussion, planning, and raising of funds from, our Planetary
Society Members and supporters, the PlanetVac project is now underway.
stands for Planetary Vacuum, is a concept that effectively vacuums up planetary
surface materials for quick and reliable surface sampling. In practice it
actually blows materials up tubes using compressed gas. This technique can
conceptually be used to feed surface dirt to science instruments and/or feed it
into sample return rockets on landers on Mars, asteroids, or the Moon
REMEMBERING THE PLUTO CAMPAIGN: A SUCCESS STORY You Worked for Years to Help Launch a Mission to Pluto
There's a fascinating Pluto conference, "The Pluto
System on the Eve of Exploration by New Horizons", going on this week at
the Applied Physics Laboratory in Maryland. Excitement is really building for
New Horizons' encounter with Pluto, which will culminate in July 2015 but which
will really span the entire year.
It is quite likely that this mission would still be a
beautiful dream, and that Pluto and its icy moons would continue to remain a
mystery for decades to come were it not for The Planetary Society's Members' efforts
to make this mission a reality.
LASER BEES PAPERS Boring into Asteroids with Lasers to Move Them
For those wishing to bore into more
details of the Planetary Society's Laser Bees project itself, graduate student
Alison Gibbings from the University of Strathclyde has sent their technical
paper that resulted from the 2013 Planetary Defense Conference.
We’ve made huge progress. At this very moment there are
multiple bills in Congress that authorize our recommended level of funding for
Planetary Science and a new mission to Europa. This is very much thanks to you.
Here’s the latest on this disastrous
NASA budget and our efforts to Save Our Science.
The view from Saturn
of our Earthly home -- one and a half billion kilometers away. We see Earth and
the Moon through a thin veil of faintly blue ice crystals, the outskirts of
Saturn's E ring. Earth is just a bright dot -- a bit brighter than the other
stars in the image, but no brighter than any planet (like Saturn!) in our own