After the first-ever dive through the narrow gap between the planet Saturn and its rings, NASA's Cassini spacecraft called home to mission control.



April 26, 2017

Linda Spilker, Casssini Project Scientist:

Cassini dove in between the rings and the planet for the very first time. So at midnight tonight will be the first time Cassini turns back to the earth, sends a signal and lets us know that it successfully navigated through this gap where it's flown for the very, very first time.


Systems, radio science, we have X band carrier signal detection.

Earl Maize, Cassini Project Manager

We've got a booming carrier. Everything looks great. We're just now waiting for the data.

ACE : Ansco systems, Cassini Ace, I can confirm we have a good lock on the 66360 bit rate data at this time should see it.


Cassini Ace, I confirm that the science playback is in lock and starting to run.


Linda Spilker

Cassini is safely sending back data.


Jim Green, NASA Planetary Science Division Director:

Cassini is a mission of firsts. Time and time again it has continued to surprise us. Astounding observations. It has changed our thinking irrevocably.

Linda Spilker:

Onward to the Grand Finale.


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