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Science and Exploration of the Moon, Near-Earth Asteroids, and the Moons of Mars

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Last updated:
28 December 2017
This special collection, sponsored by NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) invites papers focusing on the science and exploration of the Moon, Near-Earth Asteroids, and the moons of Mars. It contains contributions covering topics including, but not limited to, geologic investigations, dust/exosphere/plasma environments, surface remote sensing studies, field analog studies, laboratory analyses, and geophysical modeling relevant to the bodies of interest. In addition, it contains contributions focusing on efforts to prepare for future human exploration of these bodies. Submissions come from JGR—Planets, JGR—Space Physics, Earth and Space Science, and GeoHealth. Potential authors do not need to be members of a SSERVI team to submit a paper to this special collection.

Mars Aeronomy

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Last updated:
27 December 2017
The Mars upper atmosphere, ionosphere, magnetosphere, and solar-wind interactions are becoming increasingly important for understanding loss of atmosphere to space and the evolution of the Martian climate.  Recent observations have been made from Mars Express over the last decade, from MAVEN for the most-recent Mars year, and from Mars Odyssey, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and the Mars Orbiter Mission; landed spacecraft and earlier orbiters also provided valuable information. The International conference on Mars Aeronomy held in May 2017 in Boulder, Co, USA brought together all aspects of Mars aeronomy, including pertinent observations, analyses, theoretical models and results. The proposed special issue will collect the papers presented at the conference as well as will be open to all relevant manuscripts about the Mars upper atmosphere and space environment, even if the authors did not attend the conference. This collection is a joint special section between JGR-Space Physics and JGR-Planets, so the authors can submit manuscripts to either journal.

Ice on Ceres

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Last updated:
21 November 2017
Prior to the Dawn mission’s arrival at Ceres, many lines of evidence pointed to a potentially ice rich

composition, however there were no direct detections of ice on its surface. The Dawn mission has

revealed an intimate mixture of ice and silicates at Ceres’ surface, and a complex history for ice in the

interior. This issue of JGR planets focuses on evidence for ice and its dynamical behavior on Ceres

from morphological, compositional, and geophysical perspectives. Understanding the role of ice on

Ceres places important constraints on the history and distribution of water in the asteroid belt, as well

as presenting a range of surface processes potentially unique to Ceres, which represents a hybrid

between the silicate bodies of the inner solar system and the icy worlds of the outer solar system.

5th International Planetary Dunes Workshop

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Last updated:
9 November 2017
This issue includes papers from the 5th International Planetary Dunes Workshop that was held  in May 2017 in St. George, Utah. All  the papers focusing on eolian and fluvial bedforms on different bodies of our Solar System (including Earth) are welcomed. The papers of the special issue can focus on all aspects of the mechanism of bedform formation and development (geology, geomorphology, sedimentology, physics of transport and modeling). Papers on yardangs morphology and development are also welcomed. Attendance at the 5th IPDW is not required to submit a paper to the special issue.

Planetary Mapping: Methods, Tools for Scientific Analysis and Exploration

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Last updated:
11 October 2017
Imaging, geologic and geospatial mapping of planetary surfaces is key to exploration. A growing wealth of data has triggered the development of new tools, capabilities and techniques for storing, serving, analyzing and interpreting planetary mission data. The process of planetary geologic and thematic mapping also evolves both in standards and practice with the availability of more diverse, more complex, complementary datasets. This special section aims at summarizing the state of the art and perspective of planetary mapping in broad sense (imaging, geospatial, geologic) and its underlying techniques for future robotic and human exploration of solid bodies in the Solar System. Encouraged topics of the special section include: planetary cartography, analysis and visualization tools, scientific case studies for geologic/geospatial mapping matching traditional and innovative approaches. This is a special joint section and will welcome software and algorithm development (Earth and Space Science) as well as scientific data analysis papers (JGR-Planets). Manuscripts should be submitted appropriately through the GEMS Web site for either JGR-Planets orEarth and Space Science.

Editors’ Highlights from Cassini Mission

Last updated:
15 September 2017

NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute

After two decades of incredible exploration, the Cassini Mission to Saturn finished on September 15, 2017. The Cassini spacecraft has beamed back images and vast amounts of data, first from its flybys of Earth, Venus and Jupiter, then from 13 years spent circulating the ringed planet and its moons, as well as insights from landing the Huygens probe on the surface of Titan, the largest moon. According to NASA, 3948 science papers have been published as a result of the mission. A search for papers in AGU journals with Cassini mentioned in the abstract published since the mission started in 1997 generated more than 750 results across 6 different journals. We are very proud that AGU has played a significant role in publishing some of the important findings from the mission. We invited some of the editors to reflect on papers published in their journals and how they have contributed to our scientific understanding. Read their comments here; the papers they chose to highlight are included in this collection.