Cassini’s Finale

The Cassini space probe has got a serious date with Saturn coming up in the Fall on September 15th, but she’s got a very busy schedule between now and then making a series of dives through the space between Saturn and its rings. The first dive of took place last week (Wednesday, April 26th).

Here’s NASA’s story about Cassini’s successful adventure.
NASA Spacecraft Dives Between Saturn and Its Rings

Her next dive will be tomorrow (Tuesday, May 2nd), and then there will be twenty more at the rate of about once a week all summer. The dive tomorrow includes distant flybys of Saturn’s moons Daphnis and Prometheus before passing through ring plane.

This animated video from NASA tells the full story of Cassini’s “Grand Finale” and looks back at what the mission has accomplished.

Here is a shorter 360° YouTube version of the video.

The Cassini mission is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA (the European Space Agency) and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate.

Here are some places where you can learn more…
Cassini’s Grand Finale (NASA)
Cassini at Saturn (NASA)
Cassini at Saturn Timeline (NASA)

Cassini at Saturn Videos (NASA)
Cassini at Saturn Videos (YouTube)

Exploration of Saturn (Wikipedia)

Find out more about Saturn