The Power and Pyrotechnics Subsystem provides regulated 30 Volts DC electrical power to the spacecraft. The power is derived from three Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generators (RTGs), each of which use heat from the radioactive decay of 10.9 kg of plutonium dioxide to generate 300 Watts of electrical power at launch, reducing to around 210 Watts at the end of the nominal, eleven-year mission.
The power from the RTGs is conditioned and distributed to the powered spacecraft components. This subsystem also initiates electro-explosive, or pyrotechnic, devices. These devices are used throughout the spacecraft to initiate one-time events such as separating the spacecraft from the Centaur launch vehicle.
The Cabling Subsystem provides system wiring for all of the other subsystems. Interconnections are required for power, instrumentation, command, data, signal and pyrotechnic device actuations. The Cassini Cabling System is a passive system - it contains no active electronic components, generated no signals of its own, and requires no power. Its sole function is to transfer electrical signals from one subsystem to another.
Last Update: 10 Jun 2004