Apr 24, 2017 05:50 PM EDT
The last time NASA's Cassini Spacecraft has crossed Saturn's biggest moon Titan on Saturday. After 20 years of traveling in space, Cassini finally used gravitational jerk of Titan. This time the spacecraft will pass through an unexplored region between Saturn's cloud tops and its ring.
Rings of Saturn are the most extensive planetary ring system of any planet in the solar system. They consist of countless small particles ranging from micro mm size. The ring particles of Saturn are made of water ice with a trace component of the rocky material.
In addition, Cassini is expected make 22 dives through a 1,200-mile gap between the Saturn and its innermost ring on Wednesday. This spacecraft is expected to destroy itself into Saturn's atmosphere on September 15, 2017, reported by Jpost.
The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration said that the final chapter of Cassini is set to commence on Saturday by its 127th and final pass by Titan. According to Gadgets 360, Cassini is flying 608 miles above Titan at a speed 13,000 miles per hour.
In a state by NASA, Titan gravity will bend Cassini's orbit around Saturn. Instead of passing, it will begin its final dives which just pass inside the rings. During the final dives, it will measure how
much ice has been formed and what elements are there. Not only that, it will also determine the chemical composition of Saturn's ring. These data are very important to scientists to learn how the ring formed.
After a seven years journey, Cassini finally arrived at the sixth planet. But now it is running out of fuel. According to NASA, the first dive of Cassini's Grand Finale takes place on April 26, 2017, with additional dives about once a week. After destroying the Cassini Spacecraft, NASA will ensure that Earth microbes still alive on Cassini. It will not pollute the moons for future study.
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