Watch live as NASA’s Cassini spacecraft says goodbye from 900 million miles away

on Sep15

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft will plunge into Saturn’s atmosphere early Friday morning, vaporizing like a small meteor in the Saturnian sky.

Here on Earth, mission leaders will gather at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge to await the signal that their beloved spacecraft is no more — and you can join them live, right here.

Cassini is expected to begin breaking apart in Saturn’s atmosphere at 3:31 a.m. Pacific time, but it will take more than an hour for its last signal to reach Earth. NASA anticipates the final transmission will arrive at 4:55 a.m.

A broadcast from JPL Mission Control will begin at 4 a.m. Pacific time. You can listen in on the mission audio feed or tune in to NASA’s live commentary.

Following the loss of signal, there will be a post-mission news conference that will include Earl Maize, Cassini’s project manager; Linda Spilker, the mission’s chief scientist; and Julie Webster, head of spacecraft operations. That presentation will be broadcast online beginning at 6:30 a.m.

deborah.netburn@latimes.com

Do you love science? I do! Follow me @DeborahNetburn and “like” Los Angeles Times Science & Health on Facebook.

MORE ON THE CASSINI MISSION

‘OK. Let’s do it!’ An oral history of how NASA’s Cassini mission to Saturn came to be

Check out Cassini’s jaw-dropping discoveries of Saturn’s moons

Epic storms, new moons and worlds that might host life: Here are Cassini’s greatest discoveries

After 13 years at Saturn, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft is ready for its grand finale



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