Planets

For the inner four planets in this solar system, each planet orbits the sun three times for every two orbits of the planet immediately to its outside. For the fourth, fifth and sixth planets, they orbit four times for every three orbits of its outer neighbor.

Astronomers Discover Rare Solar System Where Planets Orbit in Mathematical Harmony

The "resonant" planets could provide insight about how such systems form and evolve—and why our own solar system is not synced up

The James Webb Space Telescope's first image of Saturn.

Saturn's Rings Will Temporarily Disappear From View in 2025

From Earth’s perspective, we’ll be looking at the gas giant’s rings edge-on, making them nearly impossible to see

The asteroid sample that is now on display at the National Museum of Natural History. By studying the retrieved space rocks, scientists aim to better understand how water and organic material first arrived on Earth.

How to See NASA's Bennu Asteroid Sample in Person

A tiny piece of the space rock made its public debut at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, as scientists study the rest of the sample

An artist's rendition of the collision between Earth and the protoplanet Theia, which, according to the prevailing theory, resulted in the moon's formation.

Mysterious Lumps in Earth's Mantle May Be Remains of the Crash That Formed the Moon

Chunks of a protoplanet called Theia became lodged within Earth after the two worlds smashed together, new computer simulations suggest

An image of Pluto taken by the New Horizons spacecraft in 2015

A Supervolcano on Pluto May Have Spewed Ice Just a Few Million Years Ago

An unusual crater on the dwarf planet hints at past volcanic activity—and a possible vast ocean beneath its surface, scientists say

Previous analyses of seismic activity on Mars suggested its core was surprisingly large, with a low density. Two new studies suggest the opposite.

Mars' Core May Be Smaller Than Thought, Wrapped in a Sea of Molten Rock

Based on seismic waves from a meteorite impact, two teams of scientists suggest the Red Planet has another layer deep beneath its surface

The statue of the Little Prince outside Villa Albertine’s Fifth Avenue headquarters

New 'Little Prince' Statue Sits Near Central Park and Gazes Up at the Stars

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry wrote and illustrated much of the beloved novella while living in the city in the 1940s

The capsule holding the asteroid sample shortly after touching down in the desert on September 24 at the Department of Defense's Utah Test and Training Range.

A Sample of Ancient Asteroid Dust Has Landed Safely on Earth

NASA's OSIRIS-REx mission retrieved bits of rock and dust from the asteroid Bennu, which could help scientists uncover the origins of life on our planet

The James Webb Space Telescope will help scientists look for signs on life on other planets.

What Would Signal Life on Another Planet?

Astronomers have long debated what kind of chemistry might serve as a bona fide alien biosignature

An artist's rendition of exoplanet K2-18 b and the dwarf star it orbits. New observations from the James Webb Space Telescope support the idea that the world, discovered in 2015, has a hydrogen-rich atmosphere and water ocean.

This Exoplanet May Be a Distant Ocean World, James Webb Telescope Finds

The observatory detected evidence of methane and carbon dioxide—and tentatively observed a molecule that, on Earth, is only made by living things

The surface of Mars’ Pontours rock contains a network of hexagonal mud cracks that hints at historical seasons of flooding and drying.

Mud Cracks on Mars Hint at Conditions That Could Have Formed Life Long Ago

Hexagonal ridges on the Red Planet's surface suggest an ancient cycle of wet and dry periods, ideal for creating molecules necessary for cells

An artist's rendition of the highly reflective exoplanet LTT 9779 b orbiting its host star.

This Mirror-Like Exoplanet Is the Most Reflective Ever Discovered

The ultra-hot world is wreathed in metallic clouds that prevent the planet from evaporating and keep its atmosphere intact

The James Webb Space Telescope's first image of Saturn.

See the James Webb Telescope's First Image of Saturn and Its Rings

The new shot also features three of the planet's many moons, including Enceladus, a strong candidate for hosting life

Bryce Canyon is one of several national parks hosting stargazing and astronomy festivals this year.

These National Parks Are Hosting Stargazing Festivals in 2023

As more areas grow brighter with light pollution, national parks across the country have become dark-sky havens

An artistic rendering of the newly discovered LP 791-18 d exoplanet

Newly Discovered Exoplanet May Be Covered in Volcanoes

Astronomers found an Earth-sized world that could have liquid water on its surface and may be able to support life

Dusty debris discs surround the young star Fomalhaut. The two innermost asteroid belts had never been seen before Webb revealed them.

James Webb Telescope Reveals Asteroid Belts Around Nearby Young Star

The findings suggest the star Fomalhaut may have orbiting planets hidden among its rings of debris

An artist's impression of a doomed planet skimming the surface of its star.

In a First, Scientists Witness a Dying Star Swallowing a Planet

Astronomers believe the doomed world was a gas giant about the size of Jupiter

A zoomed-in image of Uranus captured by the James Webb Space Telescope. Eleven of the planet's 13 rings are visible, though some are so bright they appear to blend into one ring.

James Webb Telescope Captures Detailed Image of Uranus’ Rings

The high-tech observatory also observed two storm clouds on the planet, a polar cap, six moons and distant galaxies

Skywatchers can see five planets this week.

How to Watch Five Planets Align in the Night Sky This Week

Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Uranus will appear as if in a parade in the Western sky on Tuesday

An illustration of exoplanet VHS 1256 b, which is surrounded by clouds of hot silicate particles.

James Webb Telescope Spots Raging Dust Storms on an Exoplanet

The far-off world also has signs of water, methane, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide

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