The most recent spacecraft telemetry was acquired on Sept. 8 from the Deep Space Network tracking complex at Canberra, Australia. The Cassini spacecraft is in an excellent state of health and 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/operations/present-position.cfm.
Wednesday, Sept. 2 (DOY 245):
The kick-off meeting for the S58 Science Operations Plan process was held today. The process runs for approximately 15 weeks and will conclude on Nov. 30. At that time all products will be handed off to Uplink Operations for final development, uplink, and execution.
Today Radio Science (RSS) began a 30-day Solar Conjunction experiment. During conjunctions in 2006 and 2007, RSS performed the Solar Corona Characterization. The purpose of this experiment was to investigate the solar electron density of the solar corona as a function of separation angle and combine the data set with sets from previous experiments to correlate the data with the 11-year solar cycle. The data and resulting models have been used to further calibrate Radio Science experiments throughout the mission, since Radio Science data quality is highly dependent on solar and interplanetary plasma effects. In 2008 and now in 2009, RSS has performed the Solar Conjunction experiment. This year's experiment will conclude on Oct. 2.
Thursday, Sept. 3 (DOY 246):
Port 2 Spacecraft Activity Sequence Files for S57 were delivered today as part of the Science Operations Plan process. The files have been merged and a Science Planning Assessment report of the merge published for team review.
Friday, Sept. 4 (DOY 247):
Orbit Trim Maneuver (OTM) #216 was performed today. This was the apoapsis maneuver setting up for the Titan 62 encounter on Oct. 11. The main engine burn began at 9:14pm PDT. Telemetry immediately after the maneuver showed the burn duration was 26.29 seconds, giving a delta-V of 4.47 m/s. All
subsystems reported nominal performance after the maneuver.
The Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS), Imaging Science (ISS), Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph (UVIS), and Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) have all reported 'No-Go' for the DOY 263-266 Saturn/Titan Live Inertial Vector Propagator update. The Go/No-Go meeting today has been cancelled and the team is standing down from this activity.
Monday, Sept. 7 (DOY 250):
Labor Day Holiday in the US. JPL Closed.
The majority of science observations this week were performed by ISS. They included lit face, high phase movies in search of ring spokes, imaging of Titan's shadow on Saturn in support of Titan aerosol science, imaging of the outer moon Kiviuq, and as part of the Titan monitoring campaign, an observation of Titan with CIRS and UVIS riding along. In addition, this week RADAR obtained distant Titan radiometery science, and Radio and Plasma Wave Science performed a periodic instrument maintenance activity.
Tuesday, Sept. 8 (DOY 251):
On July 1, 2009, instrument teams delivered science data to the Planetary Data System (PDS) for data acquired from July through September, 2008. The Cassini Extended Mission began on July 1, 2008, so the first three months of Extended Mission data is now available to the public through the PDS.