Note: This is a 360° Video — press and hold to explore it!
Solar System Sun
Terrestrial Planet Mercury, Venus, Earth (Moon), Mars
Asteroid Belt Ceres, Vesta
Jovian Planet Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Kuiper Belt Pluto, Haumea, Makemake
Scattered Disc Eris, Sedna, Planet X
Oort Cloud Etc. Scholz’s Star
Small Body Comet, Centaur, Asteroid
- Space Rocks! (1/4/2019) - It was a fantastic holiday season for space fans! In fact, there was so much going on, it was almost impossible to keep up with it all. According to your news sources and interests, you have probably heard about at least some of the amazing things that happened, but chances are you haven’t heard about … Continue reading Space Rocks!
- Get Lost in Space! (9/14/2018) - Way back in August, in anticipation of the start of a new school year, I set out to update the pages on this site related to space. Those pages tend to be popular among the teachers and students who use Cosma, and I happen to enjoy updating them, too. It sounded like a short, fun … Continue reading Get Lost in Space!
- Asteroids Galore! (6/27/2018) - Head’s up! You’re going to hear a lot about asteroids over the next week or so. The good news is that none of it is related to any specific asteroid hitting us. This media blitz is due to a trifecta of asteroid related events this week. One big reason you’ll hear so much about asteroids … Continue reading Asteroids Galore!
- Octopuses from Space! (5/20/2018) - Did you hear the one about the octopuses from space? It sounds like the title of a cheesy sci-fi movie, doesn’t it? But it isn’t, this time, or at least, yet. Instead, it’s actually an oddball theory that’s been put forth in a recently published “scientific” article that’s getting quite a lot of buzz in … Continue reading Octopuses from Space!
- Asteroids Everywhere (6/30/2017) - Friday, June 30 is Asteroid Day, so you are going to be hearing a LOT about Asteroids over the next day or so (see Asteroid Day.org, NASA, YouTube and Wikipedia). The reason Asteroid Day falls on this date is because it’s the anniversary of the 1908 “Tunguska event” when scientists believe a 50 meter wide … Continue reading Asteroids Everywhere
These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…
asteroid : any of the small rocky celestial bodies found especially between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter — Webster
Asteroids are a class of Small Solar System Bodies in orbit around the Sun. They have also been called planetoids, especially the larger ones. These terms have historically been applied to any astronomical object orbiting the Sun that did not show the disk of a planet and was not observed to have the characteristics of an active comet, but as small objects in the outer Solar System were discovered, their volatile-based surfaces were found to more closely resemble comets, and so were often distinguished from traditional asteroids. Thus the term asteroid has come increasingly to refer specifically to the small rocky–icy and metallic bodies of the inner Solar System out to the orbit of Jupiter. They are grouped with the outer bodies—centaurs, Neptune trojans, and trans-Neptunian objects—as minor planets, which is the term preferred in astronomical circles.
There are millions of asteroids, many thought to be the often shattered remnants of planetesimals, bodies within the young Sun’s solar nebula that never grew large enough to become planets. A large majority of known asteroids orbit in the asteroid belt between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter or co-orbital with Jupiter (the Jupiter Trojans). However, other orbital families exist with significant populations, including the near-Earth asteroids. Individual asteroids are classified by their characteristic spectra, with the majority falling into three main groups: C-type, S-type, and M-type. These were named after and are generally identified with carbon-rich, stony, and metallic compositions, respectively. — Wikipedia
Near-Earth Objects (Minor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union)
Near Earth Asteroids (Minor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union)
Potentially Hazardous Asteroids (Minor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union)
1+ KM Near-Earth Objects (Minor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union)
Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.
A miniature camera for the Large Synoptic Survey...
on June 20, 2019 at 1:35 pm
Scientists at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory are building the world's largest digital camera for astronomy and astrophysics—a minivan-sized 3,200-megapixel "eye" of the future Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) that will enable unprecedented views of the universe starting in the fall of 2022 and provide new insights into dark energy and other cosmic mysteries. In the meantime, the lab has completed its work on a miniature version that will soon be used […]
Sailing among the stars: how photons could...
on June 20, 2019 at 6:03 am
A few days from now, a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket will lift off from Florida, carrying a satellite the size of a loaf of bread with nothing to power it but a huge polyester "solar sail." […]
Poll: Tracking asteroids a favored focus for...
on June 20, 2019 at 5:58 am
Americans prefer a space program that focuses on potential asteroid impacts, scientific research and using robots to explore the cosmos over sending humans back to the moon or on to Mars, a poll shows. […]
Troublesome trees: spread of forests contributed...
on June 19, 2019 at 1:32 pm
Evidence from ancient rocks in north Alabama show the Earth's first forest spread rapidly, likely contributing to a mass extinction of shallow marine life some 370 million years ago. […]
Ion beams and atom smashers: secrets of moon rocks
on June 19, 2019 at 1:26 pm
Moon samples collected by the Apollo astronauts a half-century ago hold answers to questions that weren't even on scientists' minds at the time, as new technological tools provide insight into some of the oldest mysteries about the moon, the earth and the solar system. […]
Largest data set in SETI history released to the...
on June 19, 2019 at 1:18 pm
Breakthrough Listen—the astronomical program searching for signs of intelligent life in the Universe—has submitted two publications to leading astrophysics journals, describing the analysis of its first three years of radio observations and the availability of a petabyte of radio and optical telescope data. This represents the largest release of SETI data in the history of its field. […]
Marine life recovery following the dinosaurs'...
on June 19, 2019 at 12:10 pm
A new study shows how marine life around Antarctica returned after the extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs. […]
Apollo moon rocks help transform understanding of...
on June 16, 2019 at 9:00 am
Moon rocks look rather nondescript—they are often gray in color—but for NASA planetary scientist Samuel Lawrence, they are the "most precious materials on Earth." […]
OSIRIS-REx breaks another orbit record
on June 14, 2019 at 12:53 pm
On June 12, NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft performed another significant navigation maneuver—breaking its own world record for the closest orbit of a planetary body by a spacecraft. […]
NASA's Psyche mission has a metal world in its...
on June 12, 2019 at 12:16 pm
Designed to explore a metal asteroid that could be the heart of a planet, the Psyche mission is readying for a 2022 launch. After extensive review, NASA Headquarters in Washington has approved the mission to begin the final design and fabrication phase, otherwise known as Phase C. This is when the Psyche team finalizes the system design, develops detailed plans and procedures for the spacecraft and science mission, and completes both assembly and testing of the spacecraft and its subsystems. […]