Cassini's Grand Finale

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Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » March 29th, 2017, 1:59 pm

Below is a list of all final orbit dates for Cassini...
https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/2893/s ... ates-2017/

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory will hold a special preview (broadcast live on both NASA-TVs) on 4 April at 2pm CDT highlighting the Cassini Grand Finale. The mission that brought to Earth unprecedented views of the Saturnian system is ending in September.

The live preview can be watched by visitors at HRPO.

More information:
https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/3011/n ... n-mission/

Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » April 24th, 2017, 1:34 pm

An excellent (and suprisingly touching) simulation video has been produced to highlight the farewell of the legendary Cassini spacecraft...
https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/system/down ... 0x1080.mp4

The Finale begins Wednesday! That morning at 5am CDT NASA-TV3 will broadcast live media interviews concerning this thrilling, important and ultimately sad mission.

Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » May 29th, 2017, 5:24 pm

The Cassini team was convinced that the 2,000-kilometer-wide area between Saturn and its rings wouldn't have many large particles that would be dangerous due to images the spacecraft acquired beforehand. They still picked a safer entry during the 26 April event and kept Cassini's antenna pointed toward the oncoming particles as a shielding measure. The Radio and Plasma Wave Science heard only a few "pings". Converted to audio, the particles sound like "pops" and "cracks", but the "whistles" and "squeaks" of the charged particles were heard as well.

More information:
https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=6832

Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » August 31st, 2017, 7:26 pm

It has highlighted our lives for over a decade—providing unprecedented images of the Saturnian system. It has been the source of inspiration and imagination for millions of Americans and other Earthlings. Now humanity says goodbye as it sacrifices itself to prevent any potential cross-contamination of microbial life. This is Cassini’s swan song… The Highland Road Park Observatory will have its doors open from 4:30am to 7:30am on Friday 15 September to say goodbye to Cassini. The event has no admission fee and is for all ages.

Because personnel hours are used for this event, there will be no Friday Night Lecture Series or Evening Sky Viewing the night of 15 September.

More information:
https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/gra ... -timeline/

Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » September 14th, 2017, 12:13 pm

Cassini is making its final approach to Saturn. Here is the final timeline...

Thursday 14 September
1:30pm CDT = "Going Out in a Blaze of Glory" [replay on NASA-TV1]
2:58pm CDT = final image taken by Cassini
3pm CDT = The Cassini Social [live on both NASA-TVs]
4pm CDT = Pre-End-of-Mission New Conference [replay on both NASA-TVs]
4:45pm CDT = Cassini transmits all data on its recorder (including last images) in anticipation for final plunge
5pm CDT = Cassini videos on NASA-TV1
6pm CDT = Pre-End-of-Mission New Conference [replay on both NASA-TVs]
7pm CDT = "Epic Journey to Saturn" [replay on NASA-TV1]
8:30pm CDT = "Going Out in a Blaze of Glory" [replay on NASA-TV1]
10pm CDT = Pre-End-of-Mission New Conference [replay on both NASA-TVs]
11pm CDT = Cassini videos on NASA-TV1

Friday 15 September
12am CDT = Pre-End-of-Mission New Conference [replay on both NASA-TVs]
1am CDT = "Epic Journey to Saturn" [replay on NASA-TV1]
2:30am CDT = "Going Out in a Blaze of Glory" [replay on NASA-TV1]
3:37am CDT = Cassini reconfigures for real-time data transmission
4am CDT = Pre-End-of-Mission New Conference [replay on both NASA-TVs]
5am CDT = Cassini videos on both NASA-TVs
6am CDT = Cassini End-of-Mission [clean feed on NASA-TV3, commentary on NASA-TV1]
6:55am CDT = loss of signal at ~1530 kilometers above cloud tops
8:30am CDT = Post-End-of-Mission News Conference [both NASA-TVs]

The "Grand Finale" a series of twenty-two dives, began in April.

More information:
https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/cass ... -to-saturn
http://hrpo.lsu.edu/programs/special2.html

NASA-TV:
https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/ ... tml#public

Christopher K.
Posts: 4401
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Cassini's Grand Finale

Post by Christopher K. » September 15th, 2017, 4:37 am

Below is the NOAA forecast for HRPO's viewing time of 4:30am to 7:30am...
precipitation potential, 8%
sky cover, 44%
relative humidity, 92%
temperature, 21˚C
surface wind, NE 2 km/h


Danko's Clear Dark Sky states that during HRPO's viewing time the transparency rating will be "average" (3 out of 5) and the seeing rating will be "excellent" (5 out of 5).

HRPO declines to rate this time period due to disparate data.

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