December 17, 2004
The objectives of the Cassini mission can be divided into five scientific categories. Titan, at the upper right, is the target for the Huygens probe, which will descend to the surface of Saturn's largest moon, making both atmospheric and surface measurements. Titan will also be intensely studied by the Cassini orbiter during its forty or more flybys of the satellite.
Icy satellites (Saturn's moons other than Titan) will be observed from intermediate distances as well as from a few selected close flybys. Fully half of the Cassini orbiter's instruments are designed to measure the particles, magnetic field, and radio emissions within Saturn's magnetosphere, shown at the lower right.
The remaining two categories are Saturn's intriguing rings and Saturn itself, depicted at the upper left. Cassini's scientific studies will constitute an enormous improvement in scientific knowledge of Saturn over the earlier Voyager and Pioneer results. (P-46655)