You need to upgrade your Flash Player The theme of this blog is not only and obviously space, but in particular “terrestrial worlds”, places that tend to have surfaces on which one could walk or at least attach oneself to. These places sometimes also have other earth-like familiar features such as atmospheres, weather, volcanos, geysers and perhaps, we are finding, even exotic oceans, rivers or lakes that are not necessarily made of familiar materials we are used to here at home. The second theme is imagery. Occasionally I do some retouching of images when needed if an image is incomplete or sometimes “dirty” or noisy. I will attempt to correct image shortcomings based upon other images or well-accepted presumed attributes. When this is done, notes will be offered as to what was added, why and sometimes how it was done. This way no one should ever wonder if something they are looking at is real or photoshop.

Two Rovers Dropped on Ryugu by Hayabusa 2

October 1st, 2018

Closest Look Yet at Occator Crater, Ceres

July 9th, 2018

Occator Crater is the mesa or large butte with a flat top located in the lower right hand corner of the image. It has been puzzling scientists since Dawn approached Ceres because its brightness was so intense that people were speculating if light could somehow actually be emanating from within the body. Many details are now visible in the boundaries between the bright and dark material but it is not yet clear if the lines are runoff, splatter or some other process yet to be understood.

Cassini Image of Mimas & Tethys

May 16th, 2018

Taken 2006. Posted by landru79.

Most Incredible REAL Video From the Surface of a Comet

May 10th, 2018

The short clip compresses 25 minutes of images taken by the Philae Lander as it came to rest on the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. There is more going on in the image than you would think. Much of the dust that appears to be falling straight down are actually stars moving as 67P rotates. The dust that is actually moving in the image travels in all directions and mostly upward.

Image by  (who just won the internet). Be sure to see this page on LiveScience that explains how the clip was made and also includes an animation isolating the stars so you can see what is actually moving on the surface.

Ceres: The Center of Occator Crater

May 3rd, 2018

We missed this amazing image (March of 2016) of the enigmatic Occator Crater on Ceres by the Dawn spacecraft. Scientists studying Ceres’ bright spots determined the spots’ age are only about four million years, some 30 million years younger than Occator crater itself. This suggests that there have been eruptive outbursts of sub-surface salt-water on Ceres over a long period of time and could even still be happening today.

That is an amazing discovery considering that the size of Ceres is smaller than anyone would have expected to have the ability to generate internal heating enough to create such processes.

Original image posted by JPL.

Jovarazzi II

January 24th, 2018

Jupiter as Art or Jovarazzi

January 12th, 2018

There are so many amazing images coming from Juno that it is hard to select anything that is not beautiful. However, this image stood out to me not only due to the colors and texture (which they all have) but compositionally as well.

Mars. Just Saying.

January 12th, 2018

Nothing to say here, except this is a pretty amazing pan.

The Farthest on Netflix

January 12th, 2018

You must see The Farthest: Voyager in Space a beautiful documentary now streaming on Netflix. The film follows the program from concept to becoming the first man-made object to explore interstellar space.
And yes, there’s also a whole in there about the Golden Record.

Some Amazing Images from Juno

June 13th, 2017

All taken from the Bruce Murray Space Image Library.

Phobos Over Mars

June 13th, 2017

Mars’ inner moon Phobos appears far darker than the bright clouds of Mars in this view taken by the Indian Mars Orbiter Mission on October 14, 2014. Image by Emily Lakdawalla for Planetary Society.

Atlas Close-Up

April 27th, 2017

There’s another crazy saucer shaped moon at Saturn. We posted last month about the tiny moon Pan and now there’s Atlas. Another oddly shaped moon imaged up-close just days before Cassini’s Grand Finale begins.

Yuri’s Night 2017

April 6th, 2017

No matter where you live, there is likely to be a Yuri’s Night event coming up soon.

Yuri’s Night in Los Angeles

On the anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s historic first human spaceflight on April 12, 1961, people gather around the world to celebrate humanity’s past, present and especially future of our collective exploration of the cosmos.

Check this link to see the schedule of events near you and even if you don’t attend any events, why not grab some Yuri’s Night merch at chopshopstore to show others you care about our future in space!

New Chop Shop Poster for Vostok 1

March 12th, 2017

Poster for Vostok 1

The third and final design in their Giant Leaps in Space Print Series was posted last week for Vostok 1. This was the first ever mission to achieve human spaceflight. Check out this and the rest of the series currently funding on Kickstarter with only a few days left. The campaign ends on March 14.

Giant Leaps in Space Print Series

All three designs are now posted for this latest installation of Chop Shop’s series of Space Exploration Mission posters. Consider becoming a backer and the rewards go on sale for their normal retail price.

The Exotic Tiny Moon Pan

March 12th, 2017

Cassini image by Ian Regan

Pan is a moon of the planet Saturn and also happens to have an unusual job “Ring Shepherd”. These are moons which help maintain the many gaps we find within Saturn’s rings. Pan is shown above in it’s natural habitat within the Encke Division of Saturn’s rings. But take a look at what Pan looks like up-close (below).

Cassini image by Ian Regan

We have seen this kind of phenomenon at Saturn before, but never quite this dramatic. A small standard potato shaped moon transformed by the accumulation of ring dust and particles into a ravioli shaped moon.

Cassini image by Ian Regan

Worth noting that the color shown above is mostly true. The red channel is replaced by infrared and blue channel replaced by ultraviolet — both offer a view that comes close to what you would see with natural light (RGB).

All images were taken by Cassini in March 2017 and processed by Ian Regan.