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The Planetary Society
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Citizen-powered space exploration
Citizen-powered space exploration

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Chinese satellite snags new views of Earth from lunar orbit

On May 20, China launched Queqiao, a lunar communications relay satellite for the upcoming Chang'e 4 lander and rover mission. On the way out to the Moon, it dropped off a pair of small satellites bound for lunar orbit called Longjiang-1 and Longjiang-2. The satellites weigh just 45 kilograms each and measure 50-by-50-by-40 centimeters. Their purpose is testing out future radio astronomy and interferometry techniques, and one also has a camera built by Saudi Arabia.

Unfortunately, Longjiang-1 had a problem and didn't make it into lunar orbit. Longjiang-2, however, was successful, and sent home a few pictures! Check them out: planetary.org/blogs/jason-davis/2018/20180614-longjiang-2-earth-pics.html
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Full episodes at planet.ly/qpCji
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Mars Exploration Family Portrait planet.ly/RoboFamily
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Saturn in infrared planet.ly/ExUQb
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Postcard from Kentucky: Space in the Bluegrass State planet.ly/kYAzf
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Oppy the Mars rover recently sent us this big, beautiful panorama.

We highly recommend the high-res version: planet.ly/FpOqA
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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Reaches Top of Endeavour Rim, Wraps Cape Tribulation planet.ly/sol4657
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Phobos over Mars from @MarsOrbiter planet.ly/6vW1B
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This is seriously epic.

The long tale of the field of exoplanetology, as told in song: youtube.com/watch?v=gai8dMA19Sw
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