Department of Physics and Astronomy
Stony Brook University
7:30 pm; ESS Building, Room 001
Friday, November 03, 2017

Saturn in 13 Years: the Cassini-Huygens Mission

Mr Donald Willcox

On September 15, 2017, NASA operations staff terminated the NASA/ESA Cassini-Huygens mission to study the rings, atmosphere, and moons of Saturn after the Cassini spacecraft exhausted its fuel supplies. During its 13 year mission, Cassini-Huygens revealed the potential for life on Saturn's moon Enceladus with striking imagery of ice plumes breaking out from the moon's surface and studied the atmosphere and surface of Saturn's moon Titan. The Cassini probe has also returned detailed imagery that showed Saturn's unique atmospheric dynamics, including its characteristic hexagonal storm at the northern pole and the evolution of storms within the atmosphere at lower latitudes. In this talk, we will look back on these and other exciting scientific observations from the Cassini-Huygens mission and the feats of engineering that enabled these discoveries.