March 28, 2017

Perils and discoveries lie ahead for long-lived Saturn orbiter

March 11, 2017

Scientists are bracing for a blitz of discoveries in the last six months of Cassini’s mission at Saturn, when the plutonium-powered robot will repeatedly ram through an unexplored gap in the planet’s famous rings, then make a destructive plunge into the atmosphere in September.

Q&A with Earl Maize, Cassini project manager (members only)

March 9, 2017

Earl Maize, who leads the Cassini mission at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, started working on the Saturn orbiter project in 1992. In September, the spacecraft will take an intentional plunge into Saturn’s atmosphere, gaining unprecedented up-close measurements and ending a 13-year odyssey round the ringed planet.

NASA spacecraft steers clear of Martian moon Phobos

March 4, 2017

NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft in orbit around Mars maneuvered out of the path of Phobos earlier this week after navigators predicted the spacecraft could run into the Martian moon in the near future, highlighting the challenge of tracking an international fleet of Mars probes set to double in size by 2021.

NASA’s Juno spacecraft to remain in current orbit around Jupiter

February 21, 2017

Concerns about the health of the Juno spacecraft’s main engine have compelled NASA managers to keep the research probe in its current arcing, high-altitude orbit around Jupiter, a decision that will delay the full science return from the $1.1 billion mission but should still allow it to meet all predetermined objectives.

Cassini offers best-ever view of Saturn’s rings

January 30, 2017

A sequence of images captured by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft last month are the most detailed pictures ever taken of Saturn’s famous rings, revealing complex, unexplained bands and the movements of dozens of tiny icy moonlets spinning around the planet.

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