10 December 2004

What's Up? Space Probes!

Space exploration has never been busier. This list doesn't include projects studying the Earth in particular ("Earth probes?"). And it leaves out the Shuttle and the International Space Station.

Mission NameObjectiveSponsors
Advanced Composition
Explorer (ACE)
Particle sensor NASA
Cassini/Huygens Saturn and its moons NASA, ESA
Chandra X-ray observatory NASA
Cluster Study magnetosphere ESA/NASA
Deep Impact Comet rendezvous NASA
DoubleStar Magnetosphere, with Cluster ESA, CNSA
Galaxy Evolution
Explorer (GALEX)
UV observatory NASA
Gravity Probe B Test general relativity NASA/Stanford

Asteroid sample return JAXA
Hubble Telescope NASA
Integral Gamma-ray observatory ESA
Mars Explorer Rovers Mars surface exploration NASA
Mars Express Mars imaging, radar, spectroscopy ESA
Mars Global Surveyor Mars imaging NASA
Mars Odyssey Mars imaging NASA

Mercury exploration NASA/Johns Hopkins
Rosetta Comet rendezvous ESA
SMART-1 Lunar analysis, ion drive ESA, ESTEC, SNECMA
SOHO Solar observatory ESA/NASA
Spitzer Infra-red telescope NASA JPL
Stardust Comet sample return NASA JPL

Gamma-ray observatory NASA
Ulysses Polar solar observatory ESA/NASA
Voyager 1 and 2 Interstellar probes NASA JPL
Wilkinson Microwave
Anisotropy Probe
Microwave observatory NASA
XMM Newton X-ray observatory ESA

Links to space agency sites:

I will try to update this list from time to time. Email me if you think it is getting out of date, or if I missed anything.

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