Category: Uncategorized

20 years ago, I started my nomadic life, I have no regrets

Something personal today... Twenty years ago today, without putting too many thoughts and with the bare minimum of preparation, I left France, my native country, for an adventurous travel around the world. I had no idea where I was really going and ...

Neverending dust

A Piece of Mars: Some parts of Mars, like this one, are very dusty. This 1.92x1.1 km (1.2x0.67 mi) area has built up a thick deposit of dust that slowly buries the impact craters until they're mere ghosts of the ...

Flying through the binary trojan asteroid system (617) Patroclus

Another day, another video! This time I am posting a video of the binary L5 Trojan Asteroid (617) Patroclus-Menoetius. In collaboration, with the team at the California Academy of Sciences, we have created a model of this interesting binary asteroid system ...

Visiting the L4 Trojan Asteroid (624) Hektor

I finally started uploading some of the animations of the talk that I gave last month at the California Academy of Sciences. Today let's watch (624) Hektor, the binary and bilobed largest Jupiter-Trojan asteroids. This is a puzzling multiple asteroid ...

Sizes of worlds

A Piece of the Solar System: This isn't my usual sort of post. But lately my 6 year old kid has been into planets, and thanks to the many informative videos on YouTube, has been reciting various names and numbers ...

The smallest dunes

A Piece of Mars: There are two small dome-shaped dunes in this frame (0.96x0.54 or 0.6x0.33 mi). If they got any larger, they'd form slip faces. Any smaller and they'd just be random drifts of windblown sand. Dunes form at ...

Gravitational wave detection rumors may end on Feb 11

It is official. NSF, together with scientists from Caltech, MIT and the LIGO collaboration will give an update on their effort to detect gravitational waves. What is LIGO? Check out this article published in Arstechnica by Eric Berger. I am not going ...

Curiosity about sand dunes (part 2/2)

Today is December 21, 2015 (northern winter and southern summer solstice on Earth). On Mars it is Ls = 84º, Mars Year 33 (about 12 sols from northern summer and southern winter solstice on Mars). It is sol 1200 of ...

AGU 2015 session: Solar system small bodies-relics of formation and new worlds to explore

Tomorrow is the last day of the Fall AGU Meeting and I am convening and chairing another session on ASTEROIDS! This session entitled "Solar system small bodies: relics of formation and new worlds to explore" was organized with my colleagues Padma ...

Thoughts on GPI

In a major breakthrough for exoplanet discovery and exploration, the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) is proving to be one of most powerful and effective instruments ever invented for directly imaging planets in orbit around other stars. The behind-the-scenes story of this ...