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Rhea Flyby (R-2) - March 2, 2010

Rhea Flyby (R-2) - March 2, 2010

Mar. 02, 2010

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Close-up view of Rhea
  Craters imprinted upon other craters record the long history of impacts endured by Saturn's moon Rhea. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Oct. 13, 2009.
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On March 2, 2010, Cassini swooped down to within about 100 kilometers of Rhea to "sniff" the moon. Particle and fields instruments will use the data collected to try to determine what is coming off Rhea. The last targeted flyby of Rhea happened in November 2005.

Approaching Rhea, RADAR performed a raster scan of the moon's surface to obtain simultaneous scatterometry and radiometry measurements to understand the texture and composition of the surface.

The Cassini Plasma Spectrometer (CAPS) took over prime pointing 45 minutes before closest approach to observe the interaction before Rhea and Saturn's magnetosphere. After closest approach, the Visible and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) and the Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) imaged Rhea at visible and infrared wavelengths to better understand its geologic history and composition. CIRS continued to observe while Rhea went into eclipse.

Related Links:

JPL Blog: Smooth Sailing by Rhea and Helene -- March 8, 2010

JPL Blog: Road-Tripping to Rhea with Cassini -- March 1, 2010

Rhea at a Glance
Rhea Flyby
March 2, 2010 (SCET)

100.9 kilometers (62.7 miles)

8.6 km/sec (19,000 mph)


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