Planetary Science Research Discoveries

Planetary scientists sharing ideas and discoveries.

Planetary Science Research Discoveries (PSRD) is an educational site sharing the latest research by NASA-sponsored scientists on meteorites, asteroids, planets, moons, and other materials in our Solar System. The website is supported by the Cosmochemistry Program of NASA's Science Mission Directorate and by Hawai'i Space Grant Consortium and is a vital link for planetary and space sciences, and for learning how science works.

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CosmoSparks Reports

CosmoSparks reports give quick views of big advances in cosmochemistry, with links to further details.



DATE POSTED

REPORT

PDF VERSIONS

APRIL 2014 Investigating Q and Noble Gases in Meteorites - Nano-scale analyses on a carbon-rich, acid-resistant residue of the Saratov (L4) meteorite.

pdf link, Investigating Q and Noble Gases in Meteorites
APRIL 2014 Laboratory Experiments to Understand the Chemical Origin of the Solar System - Looking at lithium concentration and isotope fractionation in augite grains.

pdf link, Lithium isotope fractionation
MARCH 2014 Elements Magazine—Special Issue on Asteroids - Six articles and the CosmoElements page in the February 2014 issue cover asteroid targets and sampling.

pdf link, Elements special issue on asteroids
FEB 2014 ANSMET 2013-2014 Field Season in the Miller Range, Antarctica - 333 meteorites collected for scientific study.

pdf link, ANSMET 2013-2014
FEB 2014 Presolar Oxide Grains: A Study of Spinels - Measurements of elemental and isotopic compositions and microstructural properties of presolar grains.

pdf link, presolar spinel grains
JAN 2014 The First Rock Ages Returned from the Surface of Mars - Measurements by NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover help scientists determine the age of a mudstone at Gale crater.

pdf link, First Rock Ages Returned from the Surface of Mars
DEC 2013 Titanium Variations in Mare Basalts at the Chang'e-3 Landing Site on the Moon - A look at the landing site of Yutu (Jade-Rabbit), China's Moon rover.

pdf link, mare basalts at the Chang'e-3 landing site
DEC 2013 Eden Patera, Mars—New Category of Ancient Martian Volcanism? - New study suggests plains-style caldera complexes in Arabia Terra.

pdf link, Eden Patera, Mars
NOV 2013 World Notice: 10,000 Near-Earth Objects and Details About One That Landed in Russia - International space agencies, observatories, and the United Nations plan to coordinate NEO efforts.

pdf link, Near-Earth Objects
SEPT 2013 Composition of the Rocknest Deposit, Gale Crater, Mars - Coupled with laboratory data on Martian meteorites, Curiosity rover analyses give a much fuller picture of the geological and geochemical evolution of the Martian surface.

pdf link, Composition of the Rocknest Deposit, Gale Crater, Mars
SEPT 2013 The Organics in Sutter's Mill Meteorite - Soluble and insoluble organic materials in a recently fallen CM chondrite—what they possibly mean to the development of prebiotic organics on the early Earth.

pdf link, The Organics in Sutter's Mill Meteorite
AUG 2013 Absolute Ages of Mercury's Surface - Determining the absolute ages of Mercury's oldest surfaces to bracket the bombardment and volcanic histories of the closest planet to the Sun.

pdf link, Absolute Ages of Mercury's Surface
JULY 2013 Dmisteinbergite: Refractory Mineral in Allende FUN CAI - Hexagonal CaAl2Si2O8 likely crystallized from a silicate melt at high temperature by rapid cooling.

pdf link, Dmisteinbergite in meteorites
MARCH 2013 Studying the Most Primitive Extraterrestrial Dust - Isotopic compositions and presolar grain abundances from interplanetary dust particles.

pdf link, Studying the Most Primitive Extraterrestrial Dust
FEB 2013 The Surprise Meteorite Fall in Russia, February, 2013 - The meteoroid, meteor, and ordinary chondrite in the news.

pdf link, The Surprise Meteorite Fall in Russia, February, 2013
FEB 2013 ANSMET 2012-2013 Field Season Yields New Meteorite Samples - Hundreds of new specimens will be available for research.

pdf link, ANSMET 2012-2013 Field Season Yields New Meteorite Samples
FEB 2013 Meteoritics & Planetary Science Journal–Special Issue - Articles in the December 2012 issue cover cosmochemical research presented at the 2011 Workshop on Formation of the First Solids in the Solar System.

pdf link, Meteoritics & Planetary Science Journal Special Issue
JAN 2013 Chondrule Formation - Data from oxygen-isotopic conpositions and oxidation states of chondrule olivines in CR chondrites.

pdf link, Chondrule Formation
OCT 2012 Discovery of Native Mercury and Mercury Sulfide in Tieschitz Meteorite - Microbeads of native Hg indicate cold accretion.

pdf link, Discovery of Native Mercury and Mercury Sulfide in Tieschitz Meteorite
SEPT 2012 Volatiles on Vesta - Implications for the hydrogen detected on Vesta with data from NASA's Dawn spacecraft.

pdf link, Volatiles on Vesta
AUG 2012 Mantle of Mars - Insights to the interior of Mars: theme of an upcoming workshop in Houston, TX and a newly selected NASA geophysical mission.

pdf link, Mantle of Mars
JULY 2012 Lunar Rock Densities - Measuring rock properties of density and porosity for geophysical modeling of the Moon.

pdf link, Lunar Rock Densities
JULY 2012 Water, Carbonaceous Chondrites, and Earth - The drive continues to understand all the possible sources of Earth's water.

pdf link, Water, Carbonaceous Chondrites, and Earth
JUNE 2012 Olympic-caliber Mineral Finder - A new mineral, panguite, formed during the birth of our Solar System has been found in the Allende meteorite.

pdf link, Olympic-caliber Mineral Finder
MAY 2012 Space Station Crew Answers Question about Micrometeorites - On the day Space Station astronauts opened the hatch and entered the SpaceX Dragon capsule for the first time, PSRD asked: how does micrometeorite bombardment affect spacecraft?

pdf link, Space Station Crew Answers Question about Micrometeorites
MAY 2012 Weathered Glass on Mars - Extensive deposits of weathered, glassy sediments suggest widespread explosive volcanism and late-stage surface alteration by water.

pdf link, Weathered Glass on Mars
APRIL 2012 Meteoritics & Planetary Science Journal–Special Issue - Nineteen articles in the April 2012 issue cover cosmochemical results from the Stardust Mission to Comet Wild 2.

pdf link, Meteoritics & Planetary Science Journal Special Issue
APRIL 2012 Earth's Temporary Minimoons - Asteroids temporarily orbiting Earth follow a wild route before they exit. Could they someday be mined?

pdf link, Earth's Temporary Minimoons
APRIL 2012 Why the Definition of Crystal Changed - The discovery of quasicrystals revolutionized the science of crystal chemistry, and one of them shows evidence of an extraterrestrial origin.

pdf link, Why the Definition of Crystal Changed
FEB 2012 ANSMET 2011-2012 Field Season in the Miller Range, Antarctica - 302 meteorites collected for scientific study.

pdf link ANSMET 2011-2012 Field Season in the Miller Range, Antarctica
JAN 2012 A Summer Fall - Martian meteorite, Tissint, fell in Morocco in July, 2011 and pieces are now being analyzed by cosmochemists.

pdf link, A Summer Fall
JAN 2012 Soluble Organics of the Bells Meteorite - An inventory of prebiotic, soluble organic compounds in an anomalous CM chondrite.

pdf link, Soluble Organics of the Bells Meteorite
DEC 2011 It's Not All Basalt on the Moon: Another Kind of Volcanic Rock - Looking at non-mare silicic volcanism.

pdf link, It's Not All Basalt on the Moon: Another Kind of Volcanic Rock
NOV 2011 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences–Cosmochemistry Special Feature - Nine articles inside the November 2011 issue cover cosmochemical research.

pdf link, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences--Cosmochemistry Special Feature
OCT 2011 Earth's Heat - It is now possible to measure the radiogenic heat production inside Earth, previously estimated from element ratios in chondritic meteorites.

pdf link, Earth's Heat
SEPT 2011 Cosmochemical Building Blocks called GEMS - The unfolding story of grains of Glass with Embedded Metal and Sulfides found in interplanetary dust particles.

pdf link, Cosmochemical Building Blocks called GEMS
JULY 2011 Shooting Iron Sulfides into Aluminum Foil to Better Understand Comet Wild 2 - Laboratory simulations of impacts on Stardust Al foils.

pdf link, Shooting Iron Sulfides into Aluminum Foil to Better Understand Comet Wild 2
JULY 2011 Vesta and the Vestoids - Insights to Vesta's crust, before the Dawn mission's close look at the asteroid.

pdf link, Vesta and the Vestoids
JUNE 2011 Looking After and Preserving NASA's Extraterrestrial Samples - The work of NASA's Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office.

pdf link, Looking After and Preserving NASA's Extraterrestrial Samples
JUNE 2011 A Meteorite with Up and Down Markers - Metal-sulfide nodules and vesicles aligned in asteroid's gravitational field.

pdf link, A Meteorite with Up and Down Markers
MAY 2011 Discovery of New Mineral, Krotite, in a CAI - CaAl2O4 named after Alexander N. Krot.

pdf link, Discovery of New Mineral, Krotite, in a CAI
APRIL 2011 The Role of H2S in Amino Acid Synthesis on Primordial Earth and Elsewhere - Intriguingly similar abundances of amino acids from historic lab samples and carbonaceous chondrites.

pdf link, The Role of H2S in Amino Acid Synthesis on Primordial Earth and Elsewhere
MARCH 2011 Planetary Science Decadal Survey - Vision and voyages for planetary science in the decade 2013-2022.

pdf link, Planetary Science Decadal Survey
MARCH 2011 Elements Magazine–Special Issue on Cosmochemistry - Seven articles inside the February 2011 issue cover cosmochemical research.

pdf link, Elements Magazine Special Issue on Cosmochemistry
FEB 2011 1,203 More Antarctic Meteorites Bound for Study - The 2010-2011 ANSMET team's collection.

pdf link, 1,203 More Antarctic Meteorites Bound for Study
FEB 2011 Asteroid Itokawa Samples - Hayabusa Mission results show definitive evidence for LL chondrite compositions of minerals in Itokawa Samples.

pdf link, Asteroid Itokawa Samples
DEC 2010 Asteroid Tracked--Meteorites Found! - The unfolding story of meteorite Almahata Sitta is covered in the Oct/Nov 2010 issue of Meteoritics & Planetary Science journal.

pdf link, Asteroid Tracked--Meteorites Found!
OCT 2010 An Icy Treat - Water ice confirmed on the Moon.

pdf link, An Icy Treat
OCT 2010 Stardust--Snapshots of Stars - Automated NanoSIMS Measurements of Spinel Stardust.

pdf link, Stardust--Snapshots of Stars
SEPT 2010 Brownleeite: The First New Mineral Identified From a Comet - Manganese silicide discovered in an IDP.

pdf link, Brownleeite: The First New Mineral Identified From a Comet
AUG 2010 Putting a Damper on the Damp Moon - Measurements of chlorine isotopes in lunar samples.

pdf link, Putting a Damper on the Damp Moon
JULY 2010 Controlling Contamination Before, During, and After Spaceflight - NASA Stardust Mission.

pdf link, Controlling Contamination Before, During, and After Spaceflight
JULY 2010 Messing with an Onion - Cooling of the H-chondrite parent body.

pdf link, Messing with an Onion



In July, 2010 we began creating CosmoSparks reports to bring you quick views of big advances in cosmochemistry.
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