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#919903 - 04/27/17 12:02 AM Cassini - the End  
Joined: May 2010
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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United Kingdom
The Cassini spacecraft has been studying Saturn since 2004. The mission will end on September 15th this year - if not before. It will be making a series of dives that are quite dangerous. They could destroy the spacecraft, so they weren't carried out earlier. But now that the mission is ending it's an opportunity to learn more about the Saturnian system.

Here is an artist's rendering of Cassini above Saturn's northern hemisphere, heading toward its first dive between Saturn and its rings on April 26, 2017.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech




Last edited by Mona - Astronomy; 09/15/17 12:42 PM.

Mona Evans
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#919904 - 04/27/17 01:33 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Tiger

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Mona Evans
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#919914 - 04/27/17 05:35 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Nancy Roussy Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity
Nancy Roussy  Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity

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Grand-Métis, Quebec, Canada
This is so amazing that we have that technology!

#919939 - 04/28/17 09:19 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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On April 26, Cassini made its first dive through the narrow gap between Saturn and its rings. Yesterday it was sending the science and engineering data back to Earth through NASA's Deep Space Network Goldstone Complex - that's in the Mojave Desert in California.

Here is an one of the unprocessed images of Saturn's atmosphere released by NASA.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Last edited by Mona - Astronomy; 04/28/17 09:22 PM.

Mona Evans
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#919945 - 04/28/17 10:10 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Nancy Roussy Offline
Highest Posting Power Known to Humanity
Nancy Roussy  Offline
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Grand-Métis, Quebec, Canada
Mona,

The link does not work, it says "Page not found".

#919956 - 04/28/17 09:23 PM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Nancy Roussy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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Nancy, thanks for letting me know about this. It seems that I had a misplaced bracket, but I've corrected that.


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#923059 - 09/11/17 03:17 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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The Cassini mission ends in four days, and very dramatically. Steve Cariddi writes:
Quote:
After more than thirteen years spent orbiting Saturn, the Cassini spacecraft will end its historic mission this week with a controlled plunge into the ringed planet’s atmosphere. This fiery end is necessary because once Cassini’s maneuvering fuel runs out, it might end up crashing into—and inadvertently contaminating with earthly microbes—Enceladus or Titan, two Saturnian moons that are believed to have environments suitable for life. This cutaway illustration of Enceladus depicts possible hydrothermal activity that may be taking place on and under the sea floor of the moon’s ocean, which is trapped beneath a shell of ice. Europa is a prime target for future searches for life in the solar system because it has abundant sources of water, complex organic molecules, and a source of heat.

Image credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech


Mona Evans
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#923067 - 09/11/17 08:59 AM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Angie Offline
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I hope it is completely destroyed. Us earthlings are polluters that is for sure.

#923076 - 09/11/17 06:21 PM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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I don't think anything would have much of a chance if sent plummeting into Saturn. And safe to say there would be no one there to complain! smile


Mona Evans
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#923095 - 09/12/17 12:07 PM Re: Cassini - the End [Re: Mona - Astronomy]  
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Mona - Astronomy Offline
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Tiger

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United Kingdom
Deborah Byrd brings us up to date:
Quote:
The Cassini spacecraft made a final, distant flyby of the large moon Titan today (September 11, 2017). Mission engineers have been informally referring to this encounter as the goodbye kiss, because, as it occurs, Titan provides Cassini with a gravitational nudge that sends the spacecraft toward its dramatic ending in Saturn’s upper atmosphere this Friday, September 15. NASA said the Titan flyby went as planned today.

Artist's concept of Cassini making its final flyby of Saturn’s moon Titan. [Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech]


Mona Evans
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