Cassini Scientist for a Day
Cassini Scientist for a Day
An Essay Contest For Students in Grade 5 to 12
The Cassini Scientist for a Day contest challenges students to become NASA scientists studying Saturn. Participants examine three possible observations taken by Cassini and are tasked to choose the one they think will yield the best scientific results. This choice must then be supported in essay (maximum 500 words). The contest meets U.S. National English and Science Education Standards.
UPDATE: (Sept. 2) The next edition of the essay contest will be held in 2015. We'll announce updates on this page and via email.
To be notified about all contest updates, send an e-mail to:
(Please write "Add me to the mailing list" in the subject field.)
|The winners of the 2014 U.S. edition of the contest are:|
Target 1: F ring
Target 2: Titan
Target 3: Saturn
| Juliana Yu
The Dalton School
New York, New York
| Nicholas Vitebsky
Mountain View Middle School
Mendham, New Jersey
| Neha Aryasomayajula |
Conant Elementary School
| Luca P.B. Robinson
Castaic Middle School
| Nidhi Nagireddy
Rocky Run Middle School
| Belen Morote
Copiague Middle School
Copiague, New York
| Ben Wolman
Palisades Charter High School
Pacific Palisades, California
| Emma Spears
Powell County High School
Deer Lodge, Montana
| Carolyn Frank, Dominick Frank, |
and Chelsey Frank
The winners of the 2014 International Edition are listed on these pages .
|Here are the three topics of the Spring 2014 essay contest:
Target 1 is Saturn's F ring. Cassini will be taking 70 images of the F ring using the spacecraft's Narrow Angle Camera to make a movie showing how the F ring changes as it orbits Saturn.
Target 2 is Saturn's largest moon, Titan. Cassini will be taking nine images of Titan's north polar region using its Narrow Angle Camera. These images will be stitched together to form a mosaic.
Target 3 is the planet Saturn. The Cassini spacecraft will use its Wide Angle Camera and its Narrow Angle Camera to image Saturn's north pole, studying the hurricane at the north pole and the hexagon-shaped polar vortex.
The deadline for the U.S. contest is April 17, 2014
Other countries may have different deadlines.
NOTE: If you had issues printing certificates of participation, visit this page
2013 Edition Recap:
• Winners of the last edition of the U.S. contest.
• Winners from participating countries.
• Winners from the European Space Agency international contest.
• For a list of participating countries, please visit our international page .
December 2010: Student Scientists Have Their DayStudents from schools throughout the U.S. peppered a panel of top Cassini scientists with questions on Saturn and its rings and moons. Leading the panel, on Dec. 7, 2010, was Amanda Hendrix, Cassini deputy scientist. She was assisted by Kevin Baines, a JPL Principal Scientist with extensive experience in planetary exploration, and Rosaly Lopes, a world-famous planetary geologist and volcanologist.
The event has been recorded, and is available on Ustream. |
The 2009 edition of the Ustream event is also available on Ustream.+ Watch the 2009 Webcast (63 minutes)
To be notified of all contest updates, send an e-mail to: