As they say, all good things must come to an end. Well, there’s no better example for astronomers than NASA’s declaration that the Opportunity rover mission has come to a close. While the world mourns the loss of a long lasting robot explorer, we’re also beyond appreciative of the massive amounts of knowledge gained by this mission. Why is the Opportunity rover so important to science?
Over time, we’ve used science to answer some pretty big questions. Today we continue to learn more and more about life with cutting edge technology and new discoveries, but some of those big questions still remain. Perhaps one of the biggest questions humanity has ever asked: Is there any other life out there?
On Tuesday, October 30, NASA announced that the Kepler space telescope had run out of fuel and would be retired. The mission’s story dates back 35 years, even before we knew for sure that planets existed around other stars (now called exoplanets). With so much time and so many discoveries, it’s impossible to write a complete list of Kepler highlights that you can read in one sitting, so here is an incomplete countdown of interesting things Kepler found.
Where were you on June 18, 1983? Perhaps it doesn’t stick out as a pivotal moment for you, but the activities that day changed the course of history by expanding the perception of what females could and couldn’t do in the universe.
If you’ve visited The Dome for one of our planetarium shows, there’s a good chance you’ve heard a little about one of the most exciting topics in modern astronomy: exoplanets.