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The Two Faces of Phoebe

Daniel Macháček • February 13, 2014

Cassini flew past Phoebe on June 11, 2004, on its way to entering Saturn orbit. The flyby was almost perfect but overexposure of some images have prevented color mosaics from being produced. Even though Phoebe's body is gray and dull in color, the absence of color images always provoked me. By using VIMS data, I have now produced color mosaics.

Through a Glass, Darkly

Bill Dunford • January 13, 2014

When sent from deep space, even imperfect images can inform and amaze.

Polar vortices across the solar system

Emily Lakdawalla • January 09, 2014

Earth's polar vortex has been in the American news all week. But we're not the only planet that has one; basically every world that has an atmosphere has a polar vortex. Here are lots of pretty pictures and animations of polar vortices.

What's up in planetary missions in 2014

Emily Lakdawalla • December 31, 2013

With the New Year upon us, what can we look forward to in 2014? For me, the main event of 2014 is that ESA's Rosetta mission finally -- finally! -- catches up to the comet it has been chasing for a decade. We will lose LADEE, gain two Mars orbiters, and launch Hayabusa2. The year begins with an amazing 24 spacecraft exploring or cruising toward various planetary destinations.

Enceladus huffs and puffs: plumes vary with orbital longitude

Emily Lakdawalla • December 11, 2013

In which I finally get around to writing about a paper published last August: Enceladus' plumes sometimes spout more and sometimes spout less, depending on where Enceladus is in its orbit. This discovery was enabled by Cassini's longevity at Saturn, and we'll be able to follow up on it, as long as Cassini is allowed to complete its mission.

Pretty picture: newly processed high-res view of a fractured icy moon, Dione

Emily Lakdawalla • December 04, 2013

Here's a lovely new view of Dione, one of the lovely mid-sized icy moons of Saturn, assembled by Daniel Macháček.

Just what is going on in that magnificent Cassini image of Saturn?

Emily Lakdawalla • November 13, 2013

It took months of work (and no wonder) but the wait was worth it: here is Cassini's spectacular view of Saturn, captured on July 19, 2013, as Cassini passed through Saturn's shadow. If you're a little confused by the image, I'm here to help: I've posted a video explainer.

Will We Lose Cassini’s "New" Mission at Saturn to Budget Cuts?

Van Kane • November 12, 2013

NASA’s shrinking budgets for planetary exploration may force it to decide between continued funding for the Saturn Cassini mission and the continued funding for its Mars missions.

One for the history books: Stunning Saturn mosaic captured last week by Cassini

Emily Lakdawalla • October 16, 2013

I try to be measured in my praise for spacecraft images. Not every photo can be the greatest space image ever. But this enormous mosaic showing the flattened globe of Saturn floating within the complete disk of its rings must surely be counted among the great images of the Cassini mission.

America's Pastime: Planetary Science

Mat Kaplan • October 15, 2013

Apologies to baseball fans and others for the theme of this week's Planetary Radio preview, which has star player Emily Lakdawalla on deck.

DPS 2013: Tidbits from Titan

Emily Lakdawalla • October 09, 2013

I attended a few talks at the Division for Planetary Sciences meeting today that concerned Titan's origin and interesting surface, and then one in the afternoon about the atmosphere.

Probing Titan's Atmosphere

Sarah Hörst • August 26, 2013

By now I hope that everyone has seen some of the spectacular images of the Saturn system (and especially Titan!) from the Cassini-Huygens mission. However, the measurements that often make my heart race are taken by instruments that reveal Titan in ways that our eyes cannot see.

Pretty picture: spectacular Saturn and Titan

Emily Lakdawalla • August 15, 2013

A lovely view of the ringed planet and its hazy moon seen from nearly behind them just a few days ago.

Terra Cognita

Bill Dunford • July 29, 2013

Pushing back the frontier, and filling in the blank spaces on the map.

Jani Radebaugh, Titan Explorer

Bill Dunford • July 23, 2013

Robotic space exploration is human exploration. Meet one of the people behind the machines.

Pretty picture: Looking backward

Emily Lakdawalla • July 23, 2013

Here it is: the view from Saturn of our Earthly home, one and a half billion kilometers away. We see Earth and the Moon through a thin veil of faintly blue ice crystals, the outskirts of Saturn's E ring. Earth is just a bright dot -- a bit brighter than the other stars in the image, but no brighter than any planet (like Saturn!) in our own sky.

Return of the Pale Blue Dot

Mat Kaplan • July 18, 2013

You can be part of a planetwide group photo as Cassini and MESSENGER turn their cameras Earthward on July 19.

The Space Computer and the Beautiful Worlds

Bill Dunford • June 30, 2013

An "Up Goer 5" tribute to the Cassini mission.

Worlds in Collision

Bill Dunford • June 25, 2013

Meet some worlds that were nearly shattered, literally.

The Shores of the Kraken Sea: Great Place Names in the Solar System

Bill Dunford • May 28, 2013

Nothing reflects the romance of deep space exploration more than the evocative names of places on the planets and moons.

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