Scientists have found ancient "impact glass" on the surface of Mars, which formed when asteroids struck, a billion or more years ago. If anything was alive at the time, biological materials could be trapped inside. Christopher Intagliata reports
The Thirty Meter Telescope can revolutionize astronomy and become a part of the holy mountain’s rich cultural heritage
The universe is a dark, cold place. But it has a strange region that’s even colder than usual.
Bright spots in the latest pictures from NASA’s mission to the dwarf planet may be water ice, researchers say
Simulations and laboratory tests are compiling signs of familiar and unearthly life that could be visible in future telescopes
Controversy swirls around a bold proposal for a bigger, better—and expensive—replacement for NASA’s premier space telescope
Two prominent scientists update our view of the history of life on Earth, featuring the prominent roles of oxygen and carbon dioxide, and question claims that it is fairly easy to initiate life—even on a planet such as ours
The most far-seeing search ever performed for “Dyson spheres” and other artifacts of “astroengineering” comes up empty. Where is everybody?
Radar measurements and models of Earthly glacial ice flows led researchers to conclude that the glaciers spotted on Mars from orbiters contain nearly 150 billion cubic meters of water. Lee Billings reports
Careening toward the sun, Jupiter cleared the way for Earth to form—with help from Saturn, too
The agency's controversial Asteroid Redirect Mission no longer calls for redirecting an asteroid into high lunar orbit
A new out-of-this-world theory links mass extinctions with exotic astrophysics and galactic architecture
NASA’s Cassini spacecraft spotted a surprising amount of methane erupting from Saturn’s moon Enceladus, suggesting it harbors more methane than we thought. Clara Moskowitz reports
Saturn's icy moon Enceladus has a surprisingly warm inner world
Saturn's moon Titan is too cold for cell membranes to form as they do on Earth. But researchers have come up with a cell membrane that could exist on Titan. Christopher Intagliata reports
Computer simulations reveal that a compound found on Saturn’s largest moon may be able to form a freeze-resistant, flexible membrane that could encapsulate cells or organelles
New evidence points to the evolution of the ability for bacteria to grab nitrogen from the atmosphere some 3.2 billion years ago, about 1.2 billion years earlier than thought—with implications for finding extraterrestrial life. Lee Billings reports
In his new book Bell, who has sent probes to explore distant planets, tells how two craft carrying messages for extraterrestrials have journeyed farther from Earth than any other
The much-hyped James Webb Space Telescope promises to revolutionize exoplanet science, but only if astronomers can agree on how to use it.