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No. 19 - Succesful Orbital Deflection Manoeuvre

No. 19 - Succesful Orbital Deflection Manoeuvre

The Cassini spacecraft successfully performed a getaway manoeuvre on 27 December 2004, to keep it from following the Huygens probe into the atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan. This manoeuvre established the required geometry between the probe and the orbiter for radio communications during the probe descent. Huygens has no navigating capability, so the Cassini orbiter had been placed on a deliberate collision course with Titan to ensure the accurate delivery of the probe to Titan.

Following the separation of the spacecraft Huygens will remain in a dormant state until it is activated prior to the descent through Titan's atmosphere.

Following a flyby of Iapetus on 31 December, Cassini will then be prepared for the probe relay sequence. This is a crucial element for the Huygens mission - the relaying of information between the two spacecraft and subsequent data transfer back to Earth via Cassini.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
15-Apr-2024 11:40 UT

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