Well, Cassini has been making the headlines since last two to three weeks. And also after its self-destruction in the atmosphere of Saturn, news regarding this successful mission has not stopped flowing. NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft actually died the way it lived. It exceeded everyone’s expectations and successfully voyaged around Saturn and its ring for 13 long years. And the most shocking thing occurred when Cassini was able to gather some high-quality data for extra 30 seconds than predicted, before doing a death dive into the Saturn’s atmosphere. This eventually describes the enormous capacity that Cassini had under its belt.
At NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Cassini spacecraft operations manager Julie Webster said that the Saturn Mission went perfectly and for this, all the credit goes to Cassini. Cassini was launched in the year 1997, and it reached Saturn in 2004 and then it spent 13 years Saturn Mission that included two extended journeys.
During its mission, Cassini was able to collect a lot of unknown and valuable information about Saturn and its rings. The mission was quite productive as Cassini successfully discovered that two of Saturn’s Moons-the Titan and the Enceladus might be habitable in nature. As the Fuel of Cassini was going to end hence, the scientists decided to destroy the space probe so as to avoid any collision with the moons of Saturn. If Cassini would have crashed with Titan or Enceladus, then it would have lead to contamination of their atmospheres through the Earth microbes.
So, on September 15 Cassini, a school-bus-sized space probe, lined up itself, moved its antenna towards Earth and Nose towards Saturn and dived into Saturn’s Atmosphere at a speed of about 77,000 mph before getting completely burnt and thus disconnecting with the Earth. But the controllers of Cassini at JPL revealed that Cassini was able to provide detailed data 30 seconds longer they predicted earlier. IN space mission, each second of data is important and to get 30 more seconds of data was a great achievement, thanks to Cassini.
As Saturn and Earth are separated by a distance of hundreds of millions of miles, hence to successfully get the data from spacecraft, it almost took 1 hour and 23 minutes to reach the mission control. And by that time Cassini had already burned to ash. Also, the most important thing was, Cassini was able to maintain a constant internal room temperature during its final death dive, and that’s why it was able to provide accurate information till it’s the end. So, for the scientists and researchers, Cassin’s mission to Saturn is regarded as an amazing accomplishment.