The Solar System

In the Solar System Channel, you can explore the planets and celestial objects around our own sun. Learn about topics such as Mars, Jupiter and the Moon.

Could a new space and aeronautics partnership between NASA and the United Arab Emirates Space Agency make Mars a reality within our lifetime?

Decades after archaeologists unearthed King Tut's tomb, we're still talking about the boy-king. This time it's because of his awesome space dagger.

Understanding just how the "tiger stripes" on Enceladus have sustained water eruptions from its global ocean for so long helps us learn more about Saturn's rings.

Reconciling large- and small-scale physics in a new simulation gives us better understanding of our home star.

A massive planet 10 times the size of Earth seems to have been lurking on the edge of our solar system for some time now. How come we never noticed it before?

Pluto may have escaped our notice for a long time in recorded history, but the amazing images from NASA's New Horizons mission have more than made up for that.

Sometimes you can't be afraid to throw an elbow, even if you're a planet.

Mars expert Robert Zubrin looks at the bestselling novel "The Martian"—and the new Matt Damon movie—for hazards interplanetary explorers would face.

When you think about massive, mysterious cosmic bodies like accretion disks, the water swirling around your bathtub probably isn't the first thing to come to mind. But hey, physics works the same magic on all scales.

A billion years ago, the moon stopped being geologically active. But that's not to say that the moon is doing nothing for us. Let's find out why we owe our moon some thank-yous.

Precipitation does fall from the clouds of other planets, but it's a little more exotic than the good, old-fashioned rainwater we get here on Earth. Imagine sheets of methane, sulfuric acid and, yes, even diamonds falling from the sky.

Leash your cheetah, buckle your seatbelt and tell Usain Bolt to take a knee. We're about to power through some of the speediest stuff this universe – both in the real world and in fiction – has to offer.

Do the two meet for one final, fantastic explosion? Or maybe the sun just gets a bit of wind? Or maybe nothing of consequence happens at all? Only one way to find out.

Killer asteroids are all fun and games -- until they're headed for Earth. How do we stop cosmic hot potatoes from wiping out our planet?

One tragic, moonless night in April 1912, the Titanic slid into the depths of the North Atlantic Ocean -- for good. A crew of Texas State academics suggested that Earth's favorite satellite may have some explaining to do.

It's not a pleasant thought, is it? But when you mix chaos theory with a few crazy cosmologists, those tidy, predictable orbits start getting lively.

What if your job were to protect life in the galaxy at all costs? That's exactly what the folks manning NASA's Planetary Protection office do, and bunny suits are just the beginning.

A lunar land rush is the most likely thing in the world (or, rather, out of it). As private companies gaze spaceward with dollar signs in their eyes, it's time to start settling some questions about space ownership, use and management.

We can't defy the odds of an asteroid taking a turn for Earth forever, so the world's astronomers watch the sky. What happens once they spot something?

It's tough to wrap your mind around a time when the Earth wasn't here. So how do Earth and the rest of the planets out there get their start in the universe?

Scientists have discovered the existence of water on both our moon and on Mars. Both findings are significant, but what do they mean? Can we use this information to our advantage for space exploration?

The occasional sunspot can interrupt communications here on Earth. But major solar flares have the potential to cause more havoc. Could a flare-up wipe out all our electronics?

Sunspots are peculiar dark areas that show up regularly on the surface of the sun -- and often for no reason. What causes them? What effect could these funny little spots have on the Earth?

Although other planets have rings, none are as spectacular as Saturn's. What makes the planet's stratified rings, and how did they get there in the first place?

After Viking 1 captured images of what looked like a face on Mars, the public began to speculate. Had Martians carved a colossus, or was there another answer?