Friday, 14 September 2007

Dawn and the darkness

Dawn is being prepared for launch, after an earlier postponement due to a kind of traffic jam at Cape Canaveral. Good luck for the now-or-never launch window that's about to open ...

(I have posted previously on the Dawn mission and its delay.)

Meanwhile, in orbit of Saturn, Cassini has recently had a bad cosmic ray day, just after a close flyby of the moon Iapetus. It seems to have recovered now, and there's been no loss of data. The manoeuvre was set up using an earlier pass by Saturn's two largest moons, Titan and Rhea, shown here with the sun behind them. (The difference in appearance, due to Titan's atmosphere, is striking.)

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute. More information on this image can be found here.

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