The most recent spacecraft telemetry was acquired on Nov. 22 from the Deep Space Network tracking complex at Canberra, Australia. The Cassini spacecraft is in an excellent state of health and with the exception of the CAPS instrument being powered off, all subsystems are operating normally. Information on the present position and speed of the Cassini spacecraft may be found on the "Present Position" page at: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/presentposition/.
Wednesday, Nov.16 (DOY 320)
The S71 sequence began execution today at 2011-320T03:02. The sequence will run for 70 days and conclude on Jan. 24. During that time there will be nine segments; three cross-discipline, one Satellite Orbiter Science Team (SOST), two Saturn, two Titan Orbiter Science Team (TOST), and one Magnetospheric and Plasma Science (MAPS) segment, with three targeted encounters – two Titan (T-79 and T-80) and one Dione flyby (D-3). Also, six Orbit Trim Maneuvers (OTMs) are scheduled, numbered 300 through 306 (300, 300a, 301, 303, 304, and 306).
Thursday, Nov. 17 (DOY 321)
A feature story called “Cassini Chronicles the Life and Times of Saturn’s Giant Storm” is available on the Cassini web site. It describes how new images and animated movies from the Cassini spacecraft chronicle the birth and evolution of the colossal storm that ravaged the northern face of Saturn for nearly a year. These new full-color mosaics and animations show the storm from its emergence as a tiny spot in a single image almost one year ago, on Dec. 5, 2010, through its subsequent growth into a storm so large it completely encircled the planet by late January 2011. For images and more information on this subject, link to: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/cassinifeatures/feature20111117/.
A stellar reference unit calibration took place today.
Friday, Nov. 18 (DOY 322)
Science activities this week, as the spacecraft approached periapsis, were primarily a continuation from last week and focused on Magnetospheric and Plasma Science (MAPS) investigations, with MAPS instruments acquiring nearly continuous measurements of Saturn's magnetosphere. A break in the magnetospheric measurements was made when ISS performed an 8-hour observation of the outer irregular satellite Suttungr.
Saturday, Nov. 19 (DOY 323)
The Cassini web site has four new Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds. In addition to the original RSS feed, which gathers the latest excerpts from the Cassini home page, the four new feeds include All News, Features, the latest images in the Image Gallery, and the latest Raw Images. An RSS feed is a family of web feed formats used to publish frequently updated works. For access to Cassini RSS feeds link to: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/latest-cassini-huygens.xml, http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/latest-cassini-huygens-news-releases.xml, http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/latest-cassini-huygens-features.xml, and http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/latest-cassini-huygens-pressimages.xml.
Sunday, Nov. 20 (DOY 324)
Cassini's twitter account @CassiniSaturn is now live streaming from the Cassini web site. A page is dedicated to the Cassini Saturn personification within the Cassini Mission site. For short and timely newsbytes, click on Twitter "Read The Feed" box at: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/ or link to http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/news/twitter/.
Monday, Nov. 21 (DOY 325)
Twenty three Cassini team members and Outreach staff judged the entries for the Cassini Scientist for a Day 2011 essay contest. The winning students are 5th-12th grade students from Hillsborough, Calif., Glen Ellyn, Ill., Phoenix, Ariz., Paris, Ky., Waikoloa, Hawaii, Boston, Mass., Orlando, Fla., and Fairport, N.Y. Teachers of the winning students have been notified. The United States edition of the contest included 568 students from 75 classes in 26 states. Internationally, 31 countries are running and participating in their own Cassini scientist for a Day contest.
Tuesday, Nov. 22 (DOY 326)
The Cassini Tour Atlas was delivered on Thursday, Nov. 17, and successfully re-run for the latest reference trajectory over the weekend. The Tour Atlas examines a Cassini trajectory for a wide variety of scientific opportunities. New products for tour 110818 were posted to the Science Planning and Sequence Team web site today.